Talk:Al-Qaeda/Archive 6

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Al Queda and 9/11

The Al Queda Summary on the page includes a peice where it says they are responsible for the attacks of 9/11 when the FBI and CIA deny having any "concrete proof" of Al Queda being involved with the attacks. The links to the organisation are circumstansial, Osama Bin Laden has not been endited on the attacks and they are not mentioned on his wanted poster. Use of the word "accussation" might help (could get sued for slander)

Individuals identified as "al-Qaeda members" by who?

Hi i dont know exaclty where to put this on a talk page, im new to wikipedia but on the part of al qaeda's wikipedia page where it says something about al qaeda in other countries ive found a new one in New zealand which i think sould be a part of it called AQNZ (al qaeda new zealand) i would like to add it but i dont know how to get it up onto the contents part at the top of al qaeda's page if you can help me please contact me. i think the section titled Individuals identified as "al-Qaeda members" should explain how they have been identified. im not questioning its validity just saying that it could do with a short explanation as to how they have been identified, and by who. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:52, 10 September 2007 (UTC)

I think that with a topic this hot that each and every fact in the article needs a rock-solid reference. Or several. User:Pedant 23:26, 26 September 2007 (UTC)
Well theres a reason they're not saying by who, because then that could possibly instigate attacks against the identifying agency or government. Also they can't say how, as that information is usually classified. Be glad you got anything at all out of ANY government. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:25, 4 October 2007 (UTC)
Then who claims that they are identified as al-Qaeda members? The info must have been made public at some point by someone, and if not there are no base for the claim what-so-ever, and it should be removed from the article, bizarre as that may seem.--Diovobirius (talk) 23:12, 21 November 2007 (UTC)

Questions of credibility and neutrality

links to ICU not there? this article full of nonsese?

The article states these points for "connections to the ICU" when the first bullet dosen't have anything to do with al-qaeda and the second is rather dubious...

-Hassan Abdullah Hersi al-Turki, a military leader in the Islamic Courts Union, and formerlyleader of Al-Itihaad al-Islamiya (AIAI) was designated under US Presidential Executive Order 13224 as a terrorist financier on June 3. 2004.[60]

-Aden Hashi Farah Ayro, leader of the Islamic Courts Union (ICU) youth movement, Hizbul Shabaab, was said to have gone to Afghanistan to train with Al-Qaeda before 2001, according to Matthew Bryden of International Crisis Group.[61][62]

In my humble opinion, this entire article ranges from dubious claims to utter nonsense. Isn't this supposed to be the encylopedia written by the people? Why is this article being allowed to be filled with such garbage, when other articles are subject to intense scrutiny?? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 05:16, 19 February 2007 (UTC).

Because there are people out there who would fill it with more garbage, just to express they're hatred towards that particular group. Let's face it-The current 'issues' in the middle east have a great deal to do with hatred. And then theres the ignorant Americans who would shove this thing full of more crap. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:28, 4 October 2007 (UTC)

Oh, and lets not forget about ignorant hatred of Americans (see posts above as evidence). (talk) 19:43, 28 December 2007 (UTC)

Lots of work to be done on this page

Ok, I just spent a few hours correcting numerous typos, fixing badly structured sentences, and other errors. However, the huge problem with this article is the referencing. Dozens of assertions are made for which zero references are provided. This is a serious problem. Even obvious references are missing in such cases where a book is mentioned as a source but the reference isn't given for page number, author, etc. Hopefully somebody can jump in and start tackling that problem.

Also, the section on al-Qaeda financing (and the later section on current US efforts to block it) is abysmal. More content needed! akronpow 20:45, 8 February 2007 (UTC)

It also doesn't help when people blow away properly-referenced parts of the article. Mrph. --Petercorless 09:50, 11 February 2007 (UTC)
Just because a piece is properly-referenced does not mean it's relevant to the main topic. Read through the Madrid section- there is no flow, and there is way too much text for this incident given that it's no longer linked to al-Qaeda. The section should have one link to the Wiki article on the Madrid bombings along with a sentence saying al-Qaeda is no longer linked to the incident, with a suitable reference. The event description is totally irrelevant to the broader topic of al-Qaeda. And the last sentence about a later suicide bombing is even more irrelevant. akronpow 22:39, 11 February 2007 (UTC)
Hi, Akronpow. Well, things are not as simple: The al-Qaida link is highly dubious, but the Spanish Judiciary still supports that link, and it has been widely claimed that al-Qaida was involved in the attacks.
It can not be honestly said that al-Qaeda is no longer linked to the incident. It can be said that the al-Qaida link is highly dubious and disputed, but you need several sources to tell the whole history.
I agree with you about the later suicide bombing. I remove that block of text. Randroide 14:42, 12 February 2007 (UTC)

utter presumtion - too much information, not enough facts

For such an important topic theres waaaay too much "This does not cite its references or sources", in fact this all seems to be party line opinion of Al-Qaeda.

People will use this as reference and i presume the people are who white washing here have done it with this in mind ... theres only one real reference indicating that things arent as shown in the media.

"An alternative theory, presented in the BBC film series "The Power of Nightmares", states that the name and concept of al-Qaeda was first used by the U.S. Department of Justice in January 2001"

theres a long history of government elements and false flag terrorism, its more than just a theory ... its a matter of fact. "manufactured consent"

but lets stick to PROVEN FACTS - youve listed 16 'suicide airjackers' ... many are STILL ALIVE and well at home, if even this isn't correct how much else can be.

its very simple ... you are alive or you are dead ...

youve listed 4 suicide bomber for 7/7 ... hows this a fact when there hasn't been a full investigation. yet again government tell media what to say, then youve let people repeat it here as fact.

Basically you list alot of things as fact, probably tryin to force history into compliance with an impressive amount of 'information'and its not proven its subjective.

the alternative theories on al-qaeda all quote sources and are cross referenced, with commentry by qualified individuals ... your theories are all unproven party line.

just because its in a history book, doesnt make it history —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 15:19, 9 January 2007 (UTC).

I am starting add in references and to clean up text. The most glaring faux pas I found today was the mention of Al Qaeda beginning its "crusade" against the west. I changed the word to jihad. --Petercorless 03:08, 10 January 2007 (UTC)

Describing Al Qaeda as "jihadist" is a misleading useage of the term. As Wikipedia itself states, a jihad is a "struggle in the way of God" or a struggle to "improve one's self and/or society." One would desire different terminology, if only for internal consistency. Every Muslim organization in the world has elements of jihad, as the term is properly understood. "Guerrilla" would be a more appropriate. In fact, I could have sworn that this was in a previous description. Stonedonkey 01:29, 29 May 2007 (UTC)


Neither Crusade nor Jihad is acceptable because of connotation, neither term is neutral. User:Pedant 23:31, 26 September 2007 (UTC)

But both are the terms used by many of said 'terrorists' so we have no choice but to display the facts. I mean, after all, the Term 'Nazi' is hardly neutral, but we can't remove it because its the actual name of the group. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:31, 4 October 2007 (UTC)

don't speculate on Al Qaeda's feelings and motives

I see a number of times when Al Qaeda's feelings and motives are discussed. For example.

During the Gulf War, the organization's interests became split between outrage with the intervention of the United Nations in the region, hatred of Saddam Hussein's secular government, and concern for the suffering of Islamic people in Iraq.

This is speculation. And given that Al Qaeda does appear to be inciting conflict between the various ethnic groups and blowing up lots of innocent people, I doubt the claim of "concern for the suffering of Islamic people". -- KarlHallowell 01:13, 21 April 2007 (UTC)

I would prefer the wording "terrorists attacks inciting conflict between the various ethnic groups are said to be the work of Al-Quaeda". You use the noun "Al-Quaeda" as if it is a definite thing that can be identified. It is not. User:Pedant 23:35, 26 September 2007 (UTC)
For one, this IS a definite group. Al-Qaeda exists, and it is a proven fact. However, I do agree that speculation as to the motives of the group should be excluded from the actual entry. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:33, 4 October 2007 (UTC)


Peter Bergen is cited multiple times as a source in this article but I can't find a single mention of Robert Fisk. Fisk has interviewed bin Laden three times, the first interview being as early as 1994, so it seems natural that he'd be mentioned somewhere in the article. I am guessing that the absence of any mention of Fisk is due to the fact that he is a controversial figure in the American mainstream.

Here are some quotes by Fisk on the allegation of CIA involvement with Al-Qaeda:

"Some of [bin Laden's] current Afghan fellow fighters had been trained earlier by the CIA in the very camps that were the target of the recent US missiles." - September 21, 1998

"[Bin Laden] was involved in the funding networks, which probably are the ones which still exist. They were trained, armed, organized by the CIA, Pakistan, Egypt, and others to fight a holy war against the Russians." November 1st, 2001

Neebe 06:02, 8 March 2007 (UTC)

I just hope Fish (fisk) is not swimming anymore Catarcostica 08:19, 11 March 2007 (UTC)

Fisk is not mentioned because So far nobody has brought it up. However, I thank you for bringing to light this fact, and I am sure that the editors of the page will make said changes. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:35, 4 October 2007 (UTC)

"The Power of Nightmares": This BBC Documentary is Grossly Biased

The BBC Documentary "The Power of Nightmares" quoted in this article is grossly biased towards a far-Left perspective. Not only is it a tremendously irresponsible, and transparently polticially motivated film, but it fails to meet minimum standards of credibility and should not be used a source in this article. 18:45, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

Your objection is rather non-specific. Which aspects of the documentary do you think lack credibility and why? Transcripts are available online if you want to back up your claims of bias. --Distinguisher 23:06, 3 June 2007 (UTC)

Other editors have raised the issue of including that movie in the article, I suggest that we discuss it here, instead of in several other topics. I think references to the movie should be removed because:

1. It's a favorite of conspracy-theorists, because it suggests that Al Qaeda doesn't exist. No serious expert in terrorism supports that point of view.

2. Al Qaeda isn't even the main subject of the movie.

3. It is mentioned several times in different sections. That is too much emphasis placed on a pretty obscure documentary.

4. In most of the sections that it is mentioned, the reference seems pasted on, and doesn't fit with the rest of the section. 18:34, 30 May 2007 (UTC)

1. It being a favourite of conspiracy theorists isn't grounds to dismiss it. If conspiracy theorists like ice-cream, would you no longer eat it? On point of fact, the documentary doesn't say al-Qaeda doesn't exist, but rather that there is no evidence that bin Laden used that name to refer to an organisation until after 9/11. Indeed, neither of the 'fatwas' he issued or any other public statement made by him were issued under that banner. Further point of fact, this conclusion is also that of terrorist expert Jason Burke.
2. Yet another point of fact: Al-Qaeda is the main subject of this documentary. It chronicles the history of bin Laden and radical Islamism in parallel with neoconservativism and argues that the war on terror has given extraordinary power to both.
3. This is a BBC documentary and far from obscure. It has been screened just about everywhere in the English-speaking world, with the exception of the United States. It contains interviews with well known neocons such as Irving Kristol, senior advisors to the Reagan and Bush administrations such as Richard Perle, representatives from the CIA including its former head of counter-terrorism, Vincent Cannistraro and numerous political scientists and journalists. You should probably watch it before you say anything more about it.
4. The solution to badly integrated text is to integrate it. I have no doubt that this documentary provides a perspective that is worthy of inclusion in this article, even if not everyone likes it or indeed even if some people like it a little more than they should, because it's not without its faults.--Distinguisher 21:42, 30 May 2007 (UTC)

1&2: Ehm, no... You're wrong. The documentary isn't about Al Qaeda, and suggests that the group was made up by intelligence services and politicians. I suggest you either watch it, or just read the wikipedia entry on the movie: Also, please note the posters above, that cite The Power of Nightmares as a source to the fact that "Al Qaeda doesn't exist".

3: BBC makes lot's of documentaries, and that BBC made it, doesn't change the fact that it's an obscure movie that presents a very obscure assertion. An assertion that no other terrorist-expert agrees with.

The fact is, that this is an encyclopedia, and the purpose of an encyclopedia is to present factual information. Not to be used as a soapbox by conspiracy theorists, or to list every single theory about a subject, no matter how obscure or bizzare. And the idea that Al Qaeda was invented by US intelligence agencies is very obscure and very bizzare. Several long parts of this article deals with The Power of Nightmares, that is why too much for a viewpoint as obscure as the one that the movie presents. It gives the impression that The Power of Nightmares' theory is a widely held thoery that is based in facts, and also takes away space from credible sources.

One way of dealing with this, would be to delete all the references to TPOM, and merging them into a seperate section: "conspiracy theories about Al Qaeda" or "Alternative theories on Al Qaeda".

The most sensible thing though, would be to completely remove it from the article, since the movie isn't about Al Qaeda, and because the assertion that Al Qaeda doesn't exist, or is made up by intelligence agencies is so marginal and ungrounded in reality, that for encyclopedical purposes, it doesn't really matter.

If someone made a documentary about Al Qaeda being a front for Swiss Cheesemakers, would it deserve mentioning here? No, thought not... 01:35, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

You're saying things that are embarrassingly false. This documentary is about al-Qaeda. The film doesn't assert that al-Qaeda was created by the US Dept of Justice - only that it was effectively named by it and that the view of the organization as a far-reaching international network of cells under central command is a myth perpetuated by those who benefit from this view, the reality being that it is a loose association of radical Islamists who share an idea, but who mostly act autonomously of one another. That al-Qaeda is a loose association is the mainstream view in the UK where I live. It sounds like your criterion for accepting someone as a terrorism expert is that they believe a certain thing. Jason Burke disagrees with you. Therefore, he cannot be one. And if what you mean by 'obscure' is: made by one of the biggest and most respected broadcasters in the world, commanding interviews from a wide range of high-ranking representatives from government and elsewhere, and widely screened internationally, then sure it's 'obscure'. Don't jump to conclusions based on what conspiracy nutters say about the film.--Distinguisher 17:45, 31 May 2007 (UTC)
Perhaps someone can post the original source for the assertion that the name Al-Qaeda was invented by the State dept. - Jason Burke's book Al-Qaeda? Pexise 17:19, 22 June 2007 (UTC)

The fact that the BBC made it doesn't add a shred of credibility. The BBC has been cited by it's own review board as having a serious far-Left bias in it's news presentation. The BBC has become a haven for Left-activist journalists who have political agendas to push rather than news to report. 23:38, 9 September 2007 (UTC)

The fact that only anonymous editors have a problem with the documentary seems a bit suspect to me. User:Pedant 23:39, 26 September 2007 (UTC)

In order to remain neutral, the article must include either JUST the proven facts by both sides, or must include versions from both sides, left and right. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:37, 4 October 2007 (UTC)

Bias against Al-Qaeda is extreme!

This article is extremely biased against Al-Qaeda. Please rectify this problem at once.

Please indicate specific problem parts or examples of bias. And please sign your posts. -- KarlHallowell 22:05, 15 June 2007 (UTC)

Yeah, they're nice guys really. --HanzoHattori 18:00, 22 June 2007 (UTC)

YOU BASTARD HanzoHattori! HOW CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT??? Wikipedia seems to attract only the dirtiest scum of the earth. Aleksi Peltola 18:16, 22 June 2007 (UTC)
It's elementary, my dear Peltola - because I hate freedom. --HanzoHattori 18:31, 22 June 2007 (UTC)
Yes, Aleksi, it also seems to attract only people with no sense of sarcasm. -- 17:01, 8 November 2007 (UTC)

Dont get me wrong I dislike Al'Queda as much as a person who dilikes religiosly motivated fighting can, but simply because wikipedia is written from a western standpoint (e.g. 'their attackling US!') it dosent mean it has the right to judge Al'Queda as 'bad'. And Aleksi maybe you should say to a Palesitinian when he says 'Israel is a nice country really', 'You bastard HOW CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT'. 18:50, 25 June 2007 (UTC)

What the above poster is using is called 'cultural relativism'. When it comes to murdering innocent people sorry, cultural intolerance of the killers is preferable to relativism. (talk) 21:05, 31 December 2007 (UTC)

btw no im not the anon who started the post

Yes, it's going to be biased, as the term 'terrorist' is in itself, a relative term. However, simply calling them 'angry people' fails to do them justice. If you have a better term for them, then please do share it. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:39, 4 October 2007 (UTC)

They tried to kill me.Streona 19:09, 3 November 2007 (UTC)

History of al-Qaeda

Year of foundation controversy

I think the claim that al-Qaeda was established in 1988 should be treated with far more caution in the article. It certainly shouldn't open with this claim as if it has been established beyond doubt. The claim appears to be based on a single source (Peter Bergen's book). This claim should be discussed in the article by all means, but not stated as an established fact.
The text about Bergen's year-of-foundation claim in the 'origin of name' section is also unclear: Journalist Peter Bergen cites a document from 11 August 1988 establishing al-Qaeda and referring to it as "the base." [i.e., establishing al-Qaeda and referring to it as "al-Qaeda"] The document contained the minutes of the first meeting establishing the organization: "This document outlines the discussion between bin Laden, referred to as 'the Sheikh', [Bin Laden is not actually named!] and Abu Rida, or Mohamed Loay Bayazid, to discuss the formation of a 'new military group', which would include 'al Qaeda (the base).' [So the new group they are referring to is not al-Qaeda itself, but would include it]
There is nothing in this that convinces me that what is being referred to is any more than a military or training base, but I haven't read the Bergen book. To my knowledge, no statement had ever been issued in the name of al-Qaeda prior to 9/11. The 1998 'fatwa', for instance was issued in the name of "The World Islamic Front for Jihad Against the Jews and Crusaders".
If there is consensus on this issue, I'd like to remove the claim about the year of foundation from the introduction and info box. Someone with a knowledge of the Bergen source needs to clear up that part of the text as well.--Distinguisher 01:51, 25 February 2007 (UTC)

I agree. The claim about establishing al-Qaeda in 1988 is very weakly supported. It should not be in the first paragraph - many people only read the first paragraphs and have a lot of confidence in the information in them. 12:12, 16 April 2007 (UTC)

How can they say that Al quaeda started in 1989 to offset Soviet offense in Afghanistan, when...

Soviets left in early 1989?

The text says AQ started in 1989, the table to the right says 1988, which one is it?

I don't think the answer is known with certainty. I've altered the opening line and the info box to reflect that uncertainty. See also the section I've just added in the "origin of the name al-Qaeda" section clarifying the source of discrepancies about this.--Distinguisher 14:21, 20 May 2007 (UTC)

Why the History

Given that Al-Qaeda wasn't established or even named untill 2000-2001, why is there such an emphasis on history in the article? much of the history contained is inaccurate, poorly cited and irrelevant, why is it there? Surely it would be better suited to an acticle on bin Laden or on Islamic Fachism/Terrorism in general, it has nothing specific to do with Al Qaeda. This article is very poor, it contains unsubstantiated rumors on the groups activity and presents it as fact. With such widespread dispute among academics and experts (not politicians and press secretaries) as to whether a structured organisation under the name Al-Qaeda exists - why does this article state so many 'facts' about the organisation?

Are you serious? Haven't you heard of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan? It's widely attributed for the USSR's collpase... As for facists... Henners91 08:02, 28 June 2007 (UTC)

For one, correct your spelling, both of you, and for another, to reiterate what Henners91 said in a more clear manner, The organization, or at least an organization under the same, or a similar name, Al-Qaeda was established to fight the Soviet Union's invasion and occupation of Afghanistan, which is a proven fact, as the United States supplied arms to them at the time, foolishly unknowing that they would turn and fight THEM as well, even though America is considered the den of the godless, rude, and evil. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:44, 4 October 2007 (UTC)

If you can't cite it. It probably should belong here. If you cite some editorial that doesn't specifically cite evidence, then that should probably be mentioned, at least to credit that a large percentage of intelligentsia have this opinion, even without evidence.

Also, if you don't hace access to Lexis Nexis and search "Al Qaida" before the date of 2001, 1998, 1996, etc... you have no business making the claim that the word was "fictionalized" by the U.S. government. -Chudogg - First Post —Preceding unsigned comment added by Chudogg (talkcontribs) 04:02, 14 December 2007 (UTC)

USA no kiding, Allkiding

did the USA help Alkida to organize to fight Soviet?

if so why is [this]

Nasz 09:36, 29 April 2007 (UTC)

The United States of America Supplied arms to the (at the time) 'Freedom fighter' Organization known as Al-Qaeda in order to further it's own goals of thwarting the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR, also known as the Soviet Union) in any way, and by any means, possible. So yes, The Americans Supplied Arms to the people who would become they're public enemy number One. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:47, 4 October 2007 (UTC)

Existence of al-Qaeda

al Qaeda doesn't exist

Please watch this extract from a BBC documentary on the subject. It speaks for itself. SmokeyTheCat 09:43, 19 January 2007 (UTC)

The documentary doesn't say al-Qaeda doesn't exist. It says al-Qaeda isn't a hierarchical organization. Gazpacho 11:01, 20 January 2007 (UTC)

Good point. According to this CNN reference cited in the article [1], the structure of al Qaeda is "super cells" (that) operate on their own without guidance from the men who once trained and directed them. Does that suggest that al Qaeda is an "organization" in the same sense that Alcoholics Anonymous is an organization? (with obviously very different purposes) --Nowa 13:45, 20 January 2007 (UTC)

We know they exist. The Justice Department took a group of people and gave them the name al-Qaeda long ago. This was necessary otherwise RICO prosecution would have completely stalled. Without a named organization the Justice department was screwed. So, they used the name of the Mujahideen database used to track USA-backed Afghanistan fighters.

The problem now is that once the organization al-Qaeda was officially created by the Justice Department, the real issue became 'are they several dozen people' vs 'could there be hundreds of them' vs 'are they just a flag to fly under to be credible'.

-- That Guy, From That Show! 14:07, 20 January 2007 (UTC)

When John Walker Lindh was discovered in Afghanistan, he said that Osama bin Laden funded the Arab branch of a movement called Ansar who were trained in his camps. So there was a named movement, but the name wasn't "al-Qaeda" at that time. It seems a little bizarre that the article considers the BBC documentary an "alternative" on equal terms with Osama's own remarks. Gazpacho 21:51, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

The article is wrong where it says Al Qaeda is a paramilitary organisation. Al Qaeda is an idea that many muslims share. Tony Blair admits this in an interview, and George Bush is the first person to mention this term, before he does you will notice that no islamic group will ever mention the name Al Qaeda, only after Bush mentions it do they take on the name. 02:21, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

See above. Gazpacho 03:41, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
I took the "Rhetoric" section which is generally the criticism of the use of the term and moved it lower in the article. I also found it was unsourced, and also POV. I do not want to expunge it prejudicially, but it needs to be better-written. Someone unsympathetic to the section could easily delete it, or we could have an edit war such as is common on the 9/11 conspiracy pages. I'd prefer to see this section written better and sourced. There is indeed fair criticism of the "bogeyman" aspects of the use of Al-Qaeda, and a need to describe the assertions and counter-arguments about the size and influence of the organization. Let's do our Wikibest to make it a buff section. --Petercorless 07:04, 3 February 2007 (UTC)
With al-Qaeda there are so many gaps in knowledge that people turn to rumor to satisfy the demand. However, the solution to rumors is to remove them, not to add opposing rumors. Peter Bergen talked face-to-face with Osama. He has made a career of reporting on Osama's activities. Adam Curtis does not have a comparable background. He ignores the 1996 fatwa. He presents "contradictory" statements from sources that... aren't. But if you're looking for an indictment of the NeoConspiracy, Curtis delivers, and that's what seems to drive viewers to this article. The Curtis production might be useful for the source material it includes, but its conclusions are by no means the only ones that have been drawn from the same information. Gazpacho 08:39, 3 February 2007 (UTC)

As the BBC programme extract above says the name Al-Qaeda only came into existence because of an unreliable witness in a US court prosecution. All there is is an idea, an idea of doing damage to the USA in anyway possible. You can't declare war on an idea. Nor can you ever win such a war. The article should make this clear. SmokeyTheCat 14:58, 22 February 2007 (UTC)

I see your point but I must disagree with your statement that you can't declare or win a war on an idea. If you kill people who hold that idea and remove the conditions that cause people to have the idea, it can work, as with witches in Finland during the late 17th century. Now there are very few witchesAleksi Peltola 03:46, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

All the "terrorists" - recently the Australian - all seem to contact Alqaeda quite easily. Maybe the CIA should get their phone number - maybe it's an 800 number ( they probably set it up). 12:59, 16 April 2007 (UTC)

If you seriously don't believe that al Qaeda is real, read 'Through our Enemies Eyes' by Michael Scheuer. This guy was part of a unit which basically just tracked bin Laden during the Clinton years, and seriously considered taking bin Laden out on at least two occasions. The threat posed by bin Laden was known by US intelligence long before 9/11, so it's pretty difficult to believe that this is all a post 9/11 fabrication. I'm sorry, but the BBC documentary is just plain wrong. Before Afghanistan, bin Laden had a substantial organization in the Sudan, where his operations were just as open as his later operations in Taliban-controlled Afghanistan. So at least at those points in time, al Qaeda was a openly operating organization with visible resources and organizational structures. Francis Calavera (talk) 17:57, 12 December 2007 (UTC)

The intelligence of the original author of this section doesn't exist. (talk) 21:09, 31 December 2007 (UTC)

Existence of Al Qaeda

I think there needs to be a section in this article debating the existence of Al Qaeda. I cite The Power of Nightmares. Goldfishsoldier 01:19, 15 February 2007 (UTC)

It already does? - The article mentions The Power of Nightmares and its questioning of the existence of Al-Qaeda: "According to the controversial BBC documentary The Power of Nightmares, al-Qaeda is so weakly linked together that it is hard to say it exists apart from Osama bin Laden and a small clique of close associates. The lack of any significant numbers of convicted al-Qaeda members despite a large number of arrests on terrorism charges is cited by the documentary as a reason to doubt whether a widespread entity that meets the description of al-Qaeda exists at all. The extent and nature of al-Qaeda remains a topic of dispute." Perhaps a more careful read? --Petercorless 01:38, 15 February 2007 (UTC)

See section 17 above "Al quaeda doesn't exist."SmokeyTheCat 15:07, 22 February 2007 (UTC)

You will also note the reference to the neologism Al-Qaedaism, which references your point as to whether Al Qaeda is a formal organization or a less-formal political movement or philosophy. In other words, we thought of that, and the article speaks to the issue. --Petercorless 21:27, 22 February 2007 (UTC)

Is Al-Qaeda an urban myth?

After reading the 'information' posted here, and several of the comments, it seems to me that Al-Qaeda (at least as it is currently referred to) is an invention of the United States government and that bin Laden and several other Muslims have decided it is in their interests to agree to its 'existence'.

If Wikipedia is suppose to be a scholarly site providing education on a wide variety of topics what is this thinly veiled propaganda doing here? At the very least it should be labeled as a study of the power of myth and propaganda. The effort to discuss Al-Qaeda as fact would be extremely humorous except for the fact it helps propagate very dangerous disinformation which is used as a primary foundation for the 'war on terror' which, of course, is just more disinformation.

Wikipedia needs to make a conscious decision whether dissemination of this category of 'information' adheres to its mission. 06:02, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

No, you are wrong. Complaint dismissed. This discussion is now closed.Aleksi Peltola 23:00, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
Complaint dismissed??? This user makes a very valid point. I suggest you watch "The Power of Nightmares" on Google Video Seahorsy 13:34, 12 April 2007 (UTC)
I lol'd. --HanzoHattori 08:14, 17 April 2007 (UTC)
I'm with Seahorsy. I say--against the wishes of Aleksi Peltola--we discuss this. Mrbojanglescj 06:13, 30 April 2007 (UTC)

Al-Qaeda doesn't exist?

Can someone familiar with the documentary cited please review this edit? I reverted once as it looked like vandalism and had no summary, but he says it is cited by the source. Seems a little POV-ish though. Mr.Z-mantalk¢ 01:01, 16 May 2007 (UTC)

It's not really accurate as I recollect. In any case, it is wrong and not notable to cite that opinion when we have several other more concrete explanations from better sources. This whole "database" train of thought is a bit silly. csloat 02:44, 16 May 2007 (UTC)
Adam Curtis believes that Al Qaeda is an emotionally-potent oversimplification. A convenient label applied deceitfully by western governments to a broad range of individuals and groups - many of which have different aims and objectives. Curtis also argues that there is zero evidence of Osama bin Laden using the name Al Qaeda to refer to the name of an international terror group until after he realised that was a name the United States had become fixated on. This is a very interesting point because there is little or no historic record of a terrorist organisation named Al Qaeda. Just look at the mountain of intelligence documents captured in Iraq by US forces during Operation Iraq Freedom. Not one word of Al Qaeda until after 2001. Bin Laden was otherwise referred to as "the Saudi dissident" and various Jihadists as "the Bin Laden group". smb 15:23, 16 May 2007 (UTC)
Peter Bergen cites meeting notes as far back as 1989 that use the name "al Qaeda." I believe the name was used by US intel as early as 1998. In either case, it is true that western use of the term gave it more currency among the jihadists too, and in that sense Jason Burke has similarly argued that al qaeda "doesn't exist." That is a very different claim than the one that you (correctly IMHO) erased. csloat 16:58, 16 May 2007 (UTC)
I've mentioned this earlier, but I really think that most of this section needs to belong in its own "Alternative Views" section. Given bin-Laden's statement that they themselves came up with the name "al-Qaeda", it seems a little silly to be asserting that the US came up with the name. And we've discussed the base/database theory a few times, and even if Robin Cook did say it, it's still nonsense. In any case, asserting these minority views (which still deserve mention in the article) this high up gives them more prominence than they deserve.
Also, someone may have said this earlier, but the three links to the "Power of Nightmares" videos on Google are down. Even if someone finds an alternate source, calling them "History of al-Qaeda" is really sneaky and dishonest. Even the placeholder page at Google lists them as "Power of Nightmares." Thoughts? --Dchall1 00:10, 17 May 2007 (UTC)
Osama bin Laden did himself explain the meaning of Al Qaeda: "The name 'al Qaeda' was established a long time ago by mere chance. The late Abu Ebeida El-Banashiri established the training camps for our mujahedeen against Russia's terrorism. We used to call the training camp al Qaeda. And the name stayed." [2] Al Qaeda means The Base (of operations). A sand pit. This surely must stay, along with the expert testimony amplified by the Power of Nightmares. However, Robin Cook's claim remains unsupported and leads to endless speculation. smb 00:50, 17 May 2007 (UTC)

Agree with Smb and Dchall1. Robin Cook's claim is nonsense and simply does not belong here at all. And the BBC documentary is called "The Power of Nightmares." It is not a history of al Qaeda, although obviously it discusses that history. It is certainly not a definitive history, and the experts cited such as Bergen, Burke, as well as bin Laden's own statements, are far more reliable on this question. We need to get rid of the "database" nonsense forthwith and stop belaboring it; does anyone actually still support the Cook statement here? csloat 01:10, 17 May 2007 (UTC)

In addition, does anyone support the inclusion and forward reference to Webster G. Tarpley's book, 9/11 Synthetic Terror: Made in the USA. [3] What a load of rubbish that appears to be. smb 01:37, 17 May 2007 (UTC)
Agreed; looks like self-published nonsense. csloat 01:38, 17 May 2007 (UTC)

Distinguisher, not trying to start an edit war, but there's already a link to the entry on "Power of Nightmares" under the see also section. I think it makes more sense to put it there, as the rest of the "Video" links are to outside sources. If you disagree, feel free to put it back, but it only needs to be in one section. --Dchall1 23:23, 17 May 2007 (UTC)

I see your point. There is also a reference to a BBC page about it in the "External Links" section. However, given the level of interest in this programme, I think most readers would expect to find a reference of some kind to it in the "Videos" section, which is presumably distinct from the "External Links" section for a reason. One of the other videos listed there also contains just a link to a Wikipedia article rather than an external site, so it wouldn't be alone in that respect. I don't think it would hurt to have it in more than one end section, but three would probably be overkill.--Distinguisher 23:57, 17 May 2007 (UTC)

I suggest that we remove references to "The Power of Nightmares" and Webster Tarpley. Both are favorites of conspyracy theorists, and I figure that they tried to sneak these entries into the article. "The Power of Nightmares" isn't about Al Qaeda but it suggests that Al Qaeda doesnøt really exist. (Yup, it's that wacky) This is a point of view that NO serious expert in terrorism or islamism supports, so I suggest we remove all references to it. If the conspiracy-theorists insist that it stays, we could put "TPOM" and the theory that Al Qaeda doesn't exist into a little seperate section called. "Conspiracy Theories about Al Qaeda". 18:22, 30 May 2007 (UTC)

The Documentary makes a very valid point. It does not say that there is no terror organization, it just claims that it was named by the US and that it is not a far reaching organization as many would like to believe. About the naming: it would be interesting to see is any one could produce any evidence of Osama or any other high ranking terrorists using the name before it poped up in the US. If no such evidence can be found, we must assume that the claim is true rather then false. What the Documentary also claims is that the organisation is just a hand full of people who have loose contacts with, rather then authority over other terrorists. Again i have seen no evidence that this is false. Yes Al-qaeda does exists, but is it the organization we think it is? What the documentary claims is that the organisation we know as Al-qaeda doesn't exist, and instead the real Al-qaeda, is a very small group of people with a big voice, big phonebook, and a fairly big check book, but operationally they are tiny. Yes they exist, but are they who the western mainstream think they are? In my mind there is very little evidence of this. The US told Osama and the world that Osama is the leader of a huge terrorist organisation. Osama has nothing to gain form contesting that, and everything to win from letting people believe in that. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs).

The evidence is well known and in the article; Osama used the term al Qaeda long before the US ever did. As for the network being "loose," that may be true, but the fact that members must swear an oath of loyalty to bin Laden suggests that it is an authoritarian structure of some sort. As for the actual size of the organization, I think you have a point; the problem is that there are al Qaeda affiliate organizations around the globe (esp al Qaeda in Mesopotamia) that also have taken the bayat and they may act independently but clearly coordinate their efforts with OBL/Zawahiri (e.g. the 7/7 bombings in London). csloat 16:42, 2 July 2007 (UTC)
CSloat, Bin Laden's assertion that this was always the name of his organization should be treated with suspicion because there are no known documents issued on behalf of an organization calling itself "al-Qaeda" in the 12 years that it supposedly existed prior to the September 11 attacks. Bin Laden certainly issued statements on behalf of militant jihadist groups, but never under this particular banner. It is quite possible that he's playing along with this to take advantage of the mythology that has arisen around him. As for the bayats, correct me if I'm wrong, but the only source we have to say that there is such an oath is the one and same source who told us to the name of the organization was "al-Qaeda" - the embezzler known as Jamal al-Fadl.--Distinguisher 12:32, 3 July 2007 (UTC)

Terminology and phrasing


cit.:"Al-Qaeda has committed multiple acts of terrorism and is best known for planning and executing the September 11, 2001 attacks on New York's World Trade Center and The Pentagon."

wouldn't it be more logical to say that multiple acts of terrorism/terror have been committed in the name of al-quaida? since the article lead-in states that the organizational structure is not known, this would be a more apt expression. 21:33, 8 January 2007 (UTC)

No. The known leaders of Al-Qaeda publicly stated they're responsibility for the attacks.
Unless known Al-Qaeda members and leaders state that they were directly responsible publically, you're right. OverSS 18:26, 11 January 2007 (UTC)

I'm also with user on that... you're correct, most attacks were carried "in the name of...".

But I'll go even further than that: I dare anyone to give me any proof that does'nt come from secret services that AT LEAST one major terror attacks was committed by Al Qaeda. I want links, names, facts, or anything else that can be verified by other people than secret service agents or politicians.

There is no evidence that Al Qaeda has any method of validating individuals as members. Therefore, the only thing that actually makes someone a member of Al Qaeda is their own identification as an Al Qaeda member, so any attack made by a person who claims to be a member of Al Qaeda is therefore an attack by Al Qaeda. It's not as if they need a membership card or have their name on an official list of members. Besides the recognition by dozens of governmens around the world of Al Qaeda as a terrorist organization, the United Nations has done so as well. See: Furthermore, Osama bin Laden, the creator of Al Qaeda, has been recorded making statements and acting in ways that would lead any reasonable person to believe that he was involved in the planning of the attacks of 9/11. Even before 9/11, bin Laden was implicated in a number of other attacks. In the case of the 1998 United States Embassies being bombed, Bin Laden has been formally indicted and charged by a grand jury. Grand juries are made up of regular, common citizens, not politicians, who see the evidence against the defendant. -- 00:44, 11 February 2007 (UTC)

I believe you're wrong. If an American teenager would have cried "Long live Al-Quaeda! Allah Akbar" before shooting his classmates in another college shooting, you think it would have been an Al-Quaeda terrorist attack? I don't think so. And Al-Quaeda, or whoever posts the videos and maintains the websites in its name will be more than happy to "take the responsibility" for this shooting, because whoever they are they seem to be interested in being public. An Al-Quaeda terrorist attack means that the person have had contacts within the organisation and was recognised as an Al-Quaeda member by its leader, whoever he is. Indirectly, if not directly. No information on this kind of relationships between terrorists and the organisation was given out to the general public. Basically, all we know is that somebody performed the attacks, the politicians claimed that people cried "Long live Al-Quaeda! Allah Akbar" before killing themselves (information from sources not available to us), and that somebody under the "Al-Quaeda" nickname posts videos with guys harrasing the West and taking responsibility for the attacks. Roughly speaking. Now if you believe the guys who told you about Al-Quaeda (politicians, Mr,Bush, Blair or whoever) - good, do so. If you believe the guy from the videos, who speaks rather well about the influence of the prosperous West over the religious East - do. But wiki claims that opinions should not be expressed, then please write in the article the things we know for sure: that two towers were attacked, that the Western governments have blaimed an organisation named "Al-Quaeda" for the attacks, arrested a couple of people whom they believed belonged to it, and that somepeople over the web said that they, meaning Al-Quaeda, take the responsibility for numerous attacks. And lave your opinions to yourself. And I do not think that UN official website will provide the most accurate and neutral information on its #1 enemy, eitheral or real it is.

RE: Can we tone down the Anti Islam sentiment

Yes, Osoma Bin Laden IS A MUSlIM. He just doesnt follow your or any moderate version of Islam. Al-Queda follow the version of Islam of the past Islamic caliphates, Turks, Mongols, Arabs, Afghans, and Persians who offensively invaded, conquered, pillaged, and plundered most of the middle east, south asia, and parts of africa and europe. Within less than 100 years after the death of Mohhamed, the Arab Muslims (ie the earliest Muslims) started to offensively invade and wage Jihad on non-Muslims, hence a violent trait and a violent history which is irrefutable and solid Islamic history.

What Osama Bin Laden is doing is absolutely no different from what the earliest Muslims did in order to spread Islam and establish their caliphate. He is waging an offensive Jihad against non-Muslims and is killing innoccent people, which is more of the same for Islamic history and its 1000+ year timeline. Muslims killed pagans, idolaters, heathens, and infidels routinely for hundreds of years (reference: Chachnama/ Timurs autobiography/ Al-Beruni's works/ Aurangzeb / Khiljis / Armenian Genocide / Nuristanis / Taslam Aislam / Quran itself) and are continuing to do so.

As the quran states in chapter 9:

"After the sacred months have past, slay the idolaters wherever you find them".

and dont give me that historical-context excuse crap, because then the entire Quran must be taken into context including the "good stuff" such as "there is no compulsion in religion" which Mohhamed invented when he did not have any power.

Yes, Osama Bin Laden is a muslim, Just like Hitler was a Christian or KKK is a Christian Group. Why label someone who has nothing to do with teachings of Islam and drag him with actual mainstream Islam. And Yes Muslim Caliphate did crusade and conquered countries but so did Roman Empire, Greek Empire, Alexander the Great's Empire, Persian Empire. Every Great empire was formed through battles, NO EMPIRE was formed through Peace negotiation. The difference is that while Muslims allowed every other faith to be practised, the Romans/Greek and other Empire NEVER allowed any other faith to be practised, they simply banned other religion from their empire. For example, the Jews were banned from Jerusalem until Caliph Omar(R.A) took over it in 638 AD and also without any bloodshed (This is the only conquest of Jerusalem without any bloodshed, and yet the Crusaders responded 1099AD by KILLING every muslims, jews and even Christians because they were non-white and dressed like Arabs). Taking about genocide, i can go on listing numerous genocide caused by non-muslims, The French caused Genocide, the unnamed Red-Indian Genocide, the recent Rwanda Genocide and many many more. But, why talk about them. How about the recent 6,55,000+ Iraqi's death after US invasion, I guess they dont count to you. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by [Special:Contributions/|]] (talk) 17:52, 19 February 2007 (UTC).

America has been responsible for millions of civilian deaths. More than any other country or terrorist organization in the world. However, that simply makes them misguided. Also, the fact that Osama Bin-Laden Is doing what other Muslims before him have done historically before him does not make it right any more than America's 'War on Terror' makes they're responsibility for billions of Innocent Civilian Deaths right, despite the fact that insurgent and guerrilla tactics are difficult to fight using they're conventional tactics without killing innocent. I have had to tell my American friend that 'Might does not make right' many times, but at least the Middle Eastern 'Terrorists' don't lie to you concerning they're motives.

Please research what you said "America has been responsible for millions of civilian deaths. More than any other country or terrorist organization in the world." I differ greatly on what you just said. I would like to know how you came up with this fact, because I find this very hard to believe. I will admit that all weapons are not 100% accurate, but in every war there are innocent people killed. And if you want to tell me that America's 'War on Terror' is wrong, fine, but I personally believe that you don't understand what the purpose of the 'War on Terror' was. Sure you might believe that American politicians are lying about the reason why they went to war, but do you remember the reason why Japan invaded China in the 1940's. "Two policemen murdered." Then they go in, massacre civilians in Shanghai, raped people and then burned the city. And if you've never heard of politician's lying before, I'd be very surprised. If you don't like what America is doing, be a citizen and vote in the elections. If you really care that much, do something about it. (talk) 02:16, 27 November 2007 (UTC)

Not only is that garbage an utter lie but it is so devoid of intelligence that I will not even waste time addressing these moronic points. I have some choice words for you but civility prohibits me from using them. Please go someplace elsewhere people are so uneducated that they will swallow that trash in whole. Jtpaladin 17:01, 18 July 2007 (UTC)

Actually, its not. And I will ask you to at least attempt to remain civil, American.

Can you elaborate on that? He is correct about many of the aspects in his statement, so I don't understand your complaint.-Localzuk(talk) 17:46, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
what a neutral point of view.. it is like muslims are the only group in history caused violence. I think violence is a matter of human trait, not religion. There are many who are non-muslim and violent. Attila, Genghis Khan, numerous Crusaders - who killed many pagans as muslims did;).. now, let's take another look. though Genghis Khan has known for his violence, mongolian people loves him and thinks he was a good guy. similarly some magyars, turks, germans take Attila as a ferocious but great warrior. And crusaders, to some people they were great warriors and to others they were invaders, rapers,.. I respect your idea and hope you do as well. I believe every religion has peaceful ways and there must be no compulsion at all since it is a matter of belief. I hate what terrorist did in the past and yet this isn't because of religion but those people's violent nature, if there were no religion then they would find something else to claim as a reason. 14:58, 18 December 2006 (UTC)
So what are you saying? That since other groups apart from muslims have caused violence and disaster we can safely neglect the influence of militant religions like islam? Sure, you're entitled to believe that violence is a matter of human trait not religion but since you have no argument supporting your belief it becomes rather uninteresting. What you're saying in effect is that religion has no bearing on human conduct which is just plain nonsense. Regarding the relativistic point of view "to some people they were great warriors and to others they were invaders, rapers...", I can only remind you that the conclusion you're trying to pull doesn't work. To some the earth is round and to some it's flat. So what? Should we conclude then that the formation of the earth depends on your point of view? What about paedophilia? To some it's just good sex (the molesters) and to some it is both repugnant and extremely unethical. Should we conclude that since people disagree on this subject neither is right (or wrong)?

Actually, yes. Paedophilia is repugnant and extremely unethical in our society. But it was not, for example in the ancient greece. Homosexuality was repugnant and unethical in Europe and US one century ago. It is not anymore. So what? That's all about the criterias of the society in which you live. And we should conclude that the formation of the earth IS question of point of view. Why? Because people who believed that earth was flat were exactly the same than you. EVERYTHING is about point of view, guy. Read some Descartes, man.

Read some Descartes!?!?! Well since I'm a philosophy major that shouldn't be a problem. But to adress Your comment I can understand that what You claim is that if people think that the earth is flat then the earth is actually flat, and if, at the same time, other people believe the earth to be round then the earth is neither flat nor round. I must say that I seriously doubt that You've understood the point of my criticism.

Use of the term jihad

I do not agree jihad is a completely different concept Opinion of Islamic scholars on Jihad Islampedia 18:54, 10 January 2007 (UTC)
It's not utterly different concept in terms of miltary goals, but socio-linguistically, generally an Al Qaeda operative would use the word "crusade" as a pejorative description of Western/Christian imperialism, as it has been used to refer to the Ethiopians in Somalia, or the US in Iraq. Osama bin Laden certainly would never have a literal crusade, which is a war dedicated to the Christian cross and a fight against non-Christians or heretical Christians. He would have a jihad, which is a war to retake lands from non-Muslims or heretical Muslims. It is not "completely different," but it is still incorrect. --Petercorless 20:11, 10 January 2007 (UTC)

I agree crusade is incorrect. I do not agree that jihad is the term which is correct here. Sentences here should be written in a way to present all perspectives. Jihad is similar to crusade from the point of view of an extremist Alqaeda Member this should not be the term wikipedia uses cuz this will generalize the concept in the wrong direction. At least the different Opinion of Islamic scholars on Jihad should be made clear here with a link to make the sentences NPOV ( Take a look at the opinions on the link u we will see that it is difficult to link the term jihad with war. As a native arabic speaker I can not understand this wrong translation Islampedia 20:47, 10 January 2007 (UTC)

We can add "self-declared" to modify jihad, but that is what Osama bin Laden calls it himself: "It is a duty now on every tribe in the Arab Peninsula to fight, Jihad, in the cause of Allah and to cleanse the land from those occupiers." While there are also metaphorical "crusades" and spiritual (not violent) jihad, this is the way the term has been construed by the members of Al Qaeda, and fellow mujahideen. -- Osama Bin Laden "Declaration of War against the Americans Occupying the Land of the Two Holy Places" 1996
It is difficult to consider your reference as neutral, the owner of this irrelevant webpage is Israeli. However, if u see the title the term war is considered in the title which is more accurate and neutral than the term jihad which has another meaning . Yes the extremists use the term as equal to war but in wikipedia either war' should be used or jihad with a clear note on the other different opinions on the word 'jihad' because leaving it this way drives any Christian to think that jihad == holy war which is wrong. You can find this misunderstanding in many articles on the web some of them because the writers do not know the meaning of jihad' but many because writers are interested to keep jihad==holy war , the reasons for this are clear. To my knowledge, any Muslim who is not wahabi like Bin Laden agrees on this. Either we keep jihad and explain that it is misused by Bin Laden or we use war Islampedia 03:26, 11 January 2007 (UTC)
Strong Keep - The term jihad is how the war in Afghanistan, as well as the wars waged by Osama bin Laden since then, have been referred to by Al Qaeda itself. The term also came up in Somalia vs. Ethiopia invoked by Al Qaeda. While there are other forms of non-violent jihad, those are not what Al Qaeda generally is referring to. On the page describing Al Qaeda, we need to use the term as Al Qaeda means to use them. To otherwise blandize the article by reducing jihad to the more generic "war" loses the semiotic differentiation that Al Qaeda itself asserts. It is not just waging "war." It purports to wage jihad. There is a lot of clarification on the jihad pages, including offensive jihad, defensive jihad, etc. Such need not be rehashed here. --Petercorless 05:19, 11 January 2007 (UTC)
Considering that Al-Qaeda is understood as an extremist group by most, their outlooks on Islam differ greatly in many ways to traditional Muslims. In this article, using jihad should be modified by "self-declared" as I'm assuming that most Muslims would not agree with an "extremist" organization. It will look odd to apend it to every mention of AQ declaring a jihad, so perhaps a small notice somewhere should be made. :War and crusade are not the correct terms to use here; but the way jihad is being used is also incorrect. OverSS 14:26, 11 January 2007 (UTC)
Good point. When referenced, "jihad" should be "self-declared jihad" and "jihadist" should be "militant on self-declared jihad". "Jihadist" is a loaded term, like "islamist". With neutral POV: What is happening? Violence; war. With the analysts POV & reference: Why are they doing it? Self declared jihad. Concepts should be separate! Lukelastic 00:07, 12 January 2007 (UTC)
Cetainly, the way jihad is used in this article would only cause misconceptions of the word's meaning. OverSS 18:20, 12 January 2007 (UTC)
Perhaps in this rather extreme case (where everyone except Al-Qaeda agree that it is unadulterated warmongering (albeit to match the warmongering of its opponents)) it is acceptable to use "jihad" (note the hidden redirect), or be long winded, and use something like " war (self-declared a jihad) ". John Vandenberg 06:27, 14 January 2007 (UTC)
Looking at the choices here, I think being long winded would be more appropriate. OverSS 18:45, 17 January 2007 (UTC)
Many of the books about al-Qaeda cited in the further reading section use the term "jihad" in their titles. The word has come to be associated with the militant variety of jihad in English even if it didn't always mean that. Dictionary meanings are compiled on the basis of how words are actually used in a language, so on that basis, "jihad" means "holy war" (in English). In technical discourse like this article, it would nevertheless make sense to use the term "militant jihad" to avoid any confusion.--Distinguisher 11:05, 29 May 2007 (UTC)

Al Qaeda = The database ?

Database is Qaedat Al Bayanat قاعدة البيانات in Arabic .. The Base is 'Al Qaeda' القاعدة in Arabic. In Arabic we use 'Al Qaeda' as translation to 'The Base'. For Database we could use simply 'al Bayanat' البيانات ignoring the first part when we speak about a database which means that the idea of translating 'Al Qaeda' to 'The database' is not correct even if it is linked with some database of the extremists because they would call it 'Al Bayanat' and not 'Al Qaeda' if they mean the database. The term has more military concept here and could not be linked with a 'database'. I do not know if I am correct Islampedia 21:00, 10 January 2007 (UTC)


Bin Laden was, though, a product of a monumental miscalculation by western security agencies. Throughout the 80s he was armed by the CIA and funded by the Saudis to wage jihad against the Russian occupation of Afghanistan. Al-Qaida, literally "the database", was originally the computer file of the thousands of mujahideen who were recruited and trained with help from the CIA to defeat the Russians. Inexplicably, and with disastrous consequences, it never appears to have occurred to Washington that once Russia was out of the way, Bin Laden's organisation would turn its attention to the west.

--Robin Cook, former MP — Xiutwel (talk) 11:07, 5 July 2007 (UTC)

Robin Cook simply got this translation wrong. Ask an Arabic speaker.--Distinguisher 12:41, 5 July 2007 (UTC)

Initial "a" minor case


Ad this line at the first line of code:

{{lowercase|title=al-Qaeda}}´s the "trick" to obtain an initial low case.

I do not do it due to my "filtered" internet access. I am afraid of mangling words.Randroide 15:36, 13 January 2007 (UTC)

This is no different from the typical Wikipedia article. We don't slap this on all articles just because initial capitalization is turned on in the article names on English Wikipedia. This template does not belong here. Al-Qaeda properly has a capital A when it is used at the beginning of a sentence, as I have just done here. Gene Nygaard 15:04, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
I agree. I've just corrected all instances of the name outside of quoted text in line with the rule that the initial 'a' should be upper case when sentence initial and lower case elsewhere. --Distinguisher 18:08, 3 March 2007 (UTC)

Surely Al Qaeda should have a capital A in every instance? The A is the first letter of a proper name, so should be capital. (Arabic has no upper or lower case letters.)

Just to be argumentative, the rule that the first letter of a proper name should be a capital is a rule of the English language. al-Qaeda is not an english word, so it does not have to follow english writing conventions. —Preceding unsigned comment added by E.vondarkmoor (talkcontribs) 12:06, 4 December 2007 (UTC)

Speculation about intentions and the link between 9/11 and the war on terror

There has been an ongoing edit war over the link between the 9/11 attacks and the launching of the "war on terror" that needs to be resolved. Consider an earlier version of the phrase in question:

The United States government used the September 11 attacks as a pretext for initiating ... the War on Terrorism...

This wording in this and similar versions implies that there was a sinister ulterior motive that had nothing to do with the 9/11 attacks. There may have been, but we cannot suggest this without supporting evidence. Any discussion of intentions would be going beyond the observable facts. But we cannot assume the intentions were noble any more than we can assume they were sinister, which brings me to the other feature of the same edit war. The aim of the "war on terror" cannot be stated without a qualifying adjective. Hence, it must be the "alleged", "purported" or "stated" aim rather than simply "the aim".

The only facts we have access to are the following: (1) The United States government launched the "war on terror" after the 9/11 attacks. (2) It said the aim was to dismantle al-Qaeda and kill or capture its operatives.

A neutral phrasing will state only these facts, hence I suggest the following:

Following the September 11 attacks, the United States government launched a broad military and intelligence campaign known as the War on Terrorism, with the stated aim of dismantling al-Qaeda and killing or capturing its operatives.

I also use "stated aim" rather than "alleged aim" because in order to be an allegation it must refer to something negative. We speak of alleged criminals, but not alleged saints (in standard English).--Distinguisher 13:53, 8 May 2007 (UTC)

Characterization of first WTC attack as "largely ineffective"

Does anyone else think that characterization is too vague and should be adjusted to include the actual number of casualties, cost of property damage, and (perhaps) its signficance to the fundamentalist Jihad? Amysrobot 20:05, 29 November 2006 (UTC)

Added the actual casualties. People can make their own value judgements of the effectivity of the attack. --Petercorless 03:04, 10 January 2007 (UTC)

What people? Policy analysts, military commanders, self-described Al-Qaeda Commanders/Directors or grandmothers from New Jersey. An offensive operation seeks tactical objectives as well as strategic objectives (particularly in this case). What were the objectives? Disruption of finance, morale, political structure etc. Were those objectives achieved? To what degree? (One of the aircraft did not achieve its primary objective)

When they Say 'First attack', they are referring to the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, in which a car bomb was detonated, intending to send tower one crashing into tower three, "amid a cloud of cyanide gas" (See wikipedia entry for '1993 World Trade Center Bombings). Obviously, since both towers were still standing after the 1993 bombing, and with the death of 'only' a few people, the attack can be described as 'Ineffective'.


The last sentence says two Spanish police, Guardia Civil informers, and a Spanish policeman. Isn't this redundant? If it was three Spanish policemen, it should say so. This sentence is very confusing.akronpow 15:44, 14 February 2007 (UTC)

'start of militant operations against civilians'

The attack against the US Cole can hardly be described as an attack on civilians and Al Zawahiri was murdering people long before 1993 so the title does not work. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Gorgonzilla (talkcontribs) 04:44, 1 April 2007 (UTC).

Suddenly all opposing forces in Iraq are being called "al-Qaida" by US

This is bizarre. Does a summary of it belong in the article? 06:07, 27 June 2007 (UTC)

Actually, they're not. The Americans refer to them as 'Insurgents with terrorist links' last i checked. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:02, 4 October 2007 (UTC)


They aren't listed as terrorists enough. They are nothing more. They don't represent the Muslim people, and their cause is no justified. It should be made prety clear they're terrorists doncha think? I do. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 18:05, 10 July 2007

The article clearly indicates which governments regard al-Qaeda a terrorist organization. Bin Laden also agrees that he is engaging in terrorism. There is no debate here. But they are engaged in more than just terrorism. They have also attacked military targets such as the Pentagon and the USS Cole. Those were not technically terrorist acts because they were not targeting civilians.--Distinguisher 00:14, 11 July 2007 (UTC)
Pentagon wasn't a military target because of the means of the attack. --HanzoHattori 22:28, 13 July 2007 (UTC)
The USS Cole attack wasn't terrorism -- more what F.D. Roosevelt would have called a "cowardly sneak attack". Attacking the Pentagon likewise might not have been terrorism, but intentionally killing the civilians on board the plane that crashed into it is another story. 18:44, 17 July 2007 (UTC)
I agree. Certain acts cannot be described as 'Acts of terror' due to the absence of civilian casualties, like the USS Cole Bombing, for example. Those should be classified as 'Acts of Aggression against military targets', although it doesn't matter what you call it, it is still murder. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:05, 4 October 2007 (UTC)

Proposal: change list of alternative transliterations

I'm not proposing changing the preferred spelling, al-Qaeda, in this article.

The opening paragraph begins "Al-Qaeda (also al-Qaida or al-Qa'ida or al-Qa'idah)...."

The section "The Name Al-Qaeda" says "Al-Qaeda's name can also be transliterated as al-Qaida, al-Qa'ida, el-Qaida, or al Qaeda," citing a real-player filed that I can't play as a reliable source.

So the opening lacks "el-Qaida" and "al Qaeda", while the name-section lacks "al-Qa'idah".

A search, which counts results in books (not websites or recent news articles), and ignores whether a hyphen or space is used between words, returns these reslts:

spelling, #-of-books
al.qaeda 3280 (the periods can be spaces or hyphens - a spot check looks evenly divided).
al.qaida 1054 (a spot check favors the hyphen)'ida 480'eda 241'idah 197
al.qae'da 195
al.qaidah 187
al.qai'da 86
and al.qaedah 38 el.qaeda 20 el.qaida 18 (many german) al.qai'dah 15'edah 3

(Alqaeda and alqaida also got several hundred results, but almost all due to technical problems, mostly when a line ends with "al-" and the next continues with "qaeda" or "qaida," which Google misinterprets.)

I propose changing the lead from: "Al-Qaeda (also al-Qaida or al-Qa'ida or al-Qa'idah)..." to "Al-Qaeda (also al Qaeda, al-Qaida, al-Qa'ida, etc.; see below)...."

And changing the sentence in the name-section from "Al-Qaeda's name can also be transliterated as al-Qaida, al-Qa'ida, el-Qaida, or al Qaeda," to "Al-Qeada's name is also often translitered as al-Qaida, al-Qa'ida, al-Qa'eda, al-Qa'idah, and other variations, often omitting the hyphen as in "al Qaeda," and sometimes moving the apostrophe as in "al Qai'dah."

No single source could support that statement, but these three combined substantiate the basics: this on page 148, and this in the prologue, and this on page ix ("Note on transliteration.")

Feedback? -Agyle 02:07, 1 October 2007 (UTC)

The nature of al-Qaeda

religious affiliation?

in summary says they are sunni muslim, but in other articles of christian terrorist groups, they are just "paramilitary", and not christian? how about removing sunni muslim from this article, or adding Christian terrorist to articles like the "lord's resistance army"? or can we not have that on a predominately christian edited site? we must make it muslim biast right? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 02:14, 22 January 2007 (UTC).

Your ignorance regarding Christianity is obvious in your absurd comments. Unlike Islam, Christianity does not spread the faith by forceful actions. Yes, individuals who called themselves Christians have done bad things but this is not because of what the Bible teaches but instead because of insanity, misguided ideas, and/or power hunger. Even suggesting that the LRA is in any, way, shape or form a Christian organization is akin to suggesting Adolf Hitler loved Jewish people. Come on, give it a rest. Jtpaladin 17:15, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
He is being very reasonable. Calling Al-Qaeda an islamic organisation is akin to calling the LRA a christian one. They are both wrong. Neither have any grounding in the teachings of their respective religions.-Localzuk(talk) 17:47, 18 July 2007 (UTC)

Articles about terrorist groups should identify their ideology as specifically as can be supported from reliable sources. Terrorist groups are not "Christian terrorist groups" merely because they recruit in a part of the world that is predominantly Christian Gazpacho 03:45, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

The LRA believes the ten commandments should be made the law of the land. They are 100% Christian organization, just like al qaeda is 100% muslim. Your Christian bias is evident in that you corrected the lord's resistance army article to delete this FACT, and then added sunni to this article. You are such a bigot fascist, just like all the other wikipedia editors. Both articles should feature there religion in the summary if that is a major part of their ideology. If you remove the LRA christian references, do the same on this and all other related articles. If you don't, then i'll be putting up your smiley face on my blog for my 1721 feedburner subscribers to see. Don't be surprised if this is at the top of digg and reddit by tomorrow.

I didn't edit the LRA article, and your personal attacks and threats are not likely to have any desired effect. Gazpacho 05:55, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
It is best to go to the LRA page and add in the fact that they are Christian religious extremists. There are indeed hate groups and extremist groups which perpetrate violence in the Christian world, and where they are appropriately identifying their religious faith as the cause of their violent acts, they are marked such. --Petercorless 07:06, 3 February 2007 (UTC)
The article says that al Qaeda's religion is Qutbism, but I heard elsewhere that it is Salafism. How is this reconciled? JRSpriggs 09:25, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
Al Qaeda is conundrum within conundrum. It both exists and doesn't. It doesn't really have a set ideology beyond protest and anger against Western domination in the world, especially Western influence both within Middle-East and the larger Muslim community throughout the world. Different cells have different religious ideologies within the broad school of Islam. It acts in a very successful way by not having a set ideology, because doesn't really exist per se. It is influenced by many ideologies, mainly Qutbism. Which in itself is a derived of a Western ideology of anarchism, vis a vis - 'Propaganda of Deed', and of a revolutionary vanguard. For Qutb subjection to Allah was through action and was influenced by Salafism. Salafism can be seen as the Sunni Islam equivalent of Puritanical Christianity - trying to strip Islam of all it's 'invented' and 'foreign concepts' and promote Jihadism. Wahabism is also important as it is the mother of these ideologies, it also tries to purify Islam of it's 'invented and 'foreign'. In conclusion, they do not really have a set religious ideology or aim, as the organisation is so disparate. madkaffir 18:40, 26 March 2007 (BST)
I remember earlier the religious affiliation was listed as Qutbism, and has now changed to Salafism. Personally, I think Qutbism would be more accurate; bin Laden, Zawahiri, and other prominent leaders speak highly of the works of Sayyid and especially Muhammad Qutb; on the other hand, the overwhelming majority of Muslims in the modern Salafi movement consider al Qaeda a khariji group. I suggest either a change back to the old terminology, or perhaps a discussion about removing any specific religious affiliation based on what madkaffir said above. Any thoughts? MezzoMezzo 14:58, 10 September 2007 (UTC)

jtpaladin, your rebuttal stating that "Unlike Islam, Christianity does not spread the faith by forceful actions" is absurd. Remember the Crusades? What about when the Jews (in the Bible) exterminated the Amalekites? What about being burnt at the stake for heresy? To state that Al-Qaeda is an Islamic Organization is to state that Fred Phelps' views represent those of Christians. You did not clarify any 'ignorance of Christianity' you just declared your own. Canutethegreat 04:58, 16 November 2007 (UTC)

List of members

The list of members near the bottom of the page does seem bias, as it includes the London bombers who are not always recognised as its members, yet ignores its confirmed members involved in other attacks/plots --Boris Johnson VC 19:55, 12 January 2007 (UTC)

It is definitely sporadic. It will also likely grow over time. I suggest the section be split and moved to a separate page: "List of Al Qaeda members." Notations in such a list should be clear to cite when there are claims of membership by the person themselves, formal distinctions/designations by governments, law enforcement and militaries (such as FBI or Interpol, Executive Orders, court evidence, etc.), versus unproven or even disproven allegations and suspicions. Proposed: Please Vote on whether you think we should split the list of members to a new page. --Petercorless 23:20, 12 January 2007 (UTC)
Votes and polls are generally not used in wikipedia, see WP:POLL. In a nutshell, this says that Decisions are not made by popular vote, but rather through discussions by reasonable people, working towards consensus. Polling is not forbidden, but should be used with care.
On the matter in hand, I think that if you feel there is sufficient material to expand the list as it stands into a substantial article of its own, then go ahead - as long as someone is going to put the work in fairly soon. I don't see the need to split it, if it is just going to remain in the same state. But there is definate potential for a quality list if the things mentioned above are included (and cited). →Ollie (talkcontribs) 00:35, 13 January 2007 (UTC)

Goals of Al-Qaeda


Could someone add to this page an outline of the the stated goals of Al-Qaeda on this page and provide links to other pages where applicable.

Thanks Dcolford2000 16:02, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

This is an excellent suggestion. I was surprised to see that such a section did not exist. Every article that I can think of regarding organizations has a stated goals section but this article does not. Considering that your request is 4 months old and no one has even commented, it doesn't look like anyone is taking the initiative on this issue. I can try and see what I can find. Jtpaladin 21:18, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
A "Goals" section still remains elusive. I can't believe no one has addressed this issue. According to the Anti-Defamation League[4], "Al Qaeda was founded in 1988 by Osama bin Laden to consolidate the international network he established during the Afghan war. Its goals were the advancement of Islamic revolutions throughout the Muslim world and repelling foreign intervention in the Middle East." I also found an article which indicates al-qaeda would cease attacks on the West if the West stops interferring in the mid-east. [5]. It took me all of 5 minutes to find that. Anyone care to do further research or assemble this info into something that could be considered a "Goals" section? Jtpaladin 18:41, 10 August 2007 (UTC)
I will try to help but it will take a while. --BoogaLouie 17:52, 11 August 2007 (UTC)
Thank you. I would work on this as well but I'm supposed to be on vacation and limiting my time on WP. It seems silly that there is no "Goals" section even though info on al-qaeda's goals is so readily available and easy to find. As part of a "Goals" section, it might be useful to point out that it's clear that al-qaeda's ability to recruit would be sharply diminished once the U.S. finishes up its' work in Iraq and Afghanistan and gets out. Our interference in the mid-east is what makes people who follow al-qaeda's philosophy most angry. Even "moderate" Muslims are opposed to our continued presence in Iraq. The Muslims didn't like it 900 years ago with the Crusades and they still don't like it today. Al-qaeda has successfully portrayed U.S. and allied troops as a modern day Crusade against Muslims and this has led to such widespread hatred of the U.S. and large-scale recruitment of suicide bombers and foot soldiers to fight Allied efforts in Iraq and in Afghanistan. This doesn't mean we should remain uninvolved in the politics of the mid-east, only that our continued troop presence is what gives al-qaeda fuel for their efforts. I will try and help you with this topic, time permitting. Jtpaladin 14:54, 12 August 2007 (UTC)

Al Qaeda is a conundrum within conundrum. It both exists and doesn't... same goes for its goals, however, it can be broadly outlined in a six fold/phase basis. All phases existing simultaneously, increasing in strength as time goes on. For a western academic perspective see Lawrence Wright on youtube or the University Channel . For a pure Islamic perspective see Child Imam-Do YOU know Allah?... Back to the Phases: 1. Total Awakening... 911 WAKE UP! 2.Reassimilation of the information after the chaos. 3.Suffering due to provacation (thinking that 3 should be 2, yet these 2 are especially interchangable). 4. Defeat of the disimformation and propaganda spun against us. 5. Reassambly of the army. 6. Total Confrontation and destruction of the infidels that oppose us... for the Pure Land shall be re-established at any and all costs. The best hope the U.S. has is that the conflict can be managed and understood by way of the Information War... thru TV, Internet, and other media... raising the level of consciousness fast enough to manage the chaos. All on earth are to blame for 911. There are no innocents... all guilty of original sin. Blame me, I'm shameless. Kali ma! BlumoonNow 19:53, 16 August 2007 (UTC)

A simple section on the basic goals of Al-Qaeda is not as difficult to establish as you suggest. This is the English version of Wikipedia and as much as it would be nice to include various perspectives from global attribution, there are clear sources, some of which I have mentioned above, that can be used as a reference to creating a goals section. If no one is taking the initiative on this then when I return from vacation I'll put something together that references as many sources as possible including Bin Laden's own words. Jtpaladin 19:46, 17 August 2007 (UTC)

World domination? Jihadist?

Is Al-Qaeda's goal really world domination? It sounds like the person who wrote that is the exact opposite of one of those conspiracy kooks that think Jews call for world domination. I don't see how an actual organization could have the goal to personally control the world, its not a country or anything, and its pretty much completely decentralized, I would say its goal is at most domination of all forms of Islam or the Islamic world, and I wouldn't even claim that (but I'm no expert, thats just my opinion). It doesn't run governments or control countries directly, it may influence governments, but that is a different matter. Jihadist is also seemingly a bad word to use, maybe if you read (here in Britain) to many BNP leaflets you might start believing that Jihad is the counterpart to Christian crusades, but in actual fact a Jihad is an ongoing thing (greater Jihad) to further the understanding and personal adherence to the laws of Islam, whilst lesser Jihad can be used in a military sense to mean protection of the right to practice Islam in Islamic countries and against outside attacks on Islamic culture. To say something is 'Jihadist' may suite some tabloid, but this is an encyclopedia and to call something 'Jihadist' is an over-simplification and worngly implies Jihad is something military based in origin. I would replace Jihadist with religiously fundamentalist or religious motivated militant organization. 18:43, 25 June 2007 (UTC)

'Lesser Jihad also includes one or two other things, but as I cannot clearly remember them, I will not post conjecture, but merely bring to your attention they're existence. Also, I have corrected multiple Spelling errors on all of your posts, to ensure that the facts come through clearly.

Your one other thing, just wanted to say this article makes Al-Qaeda out to be some kind of James Bond movie-esque 'we want to take over the world' group, that has a master mind 'Osama Bin-Laden' and a centralized and fixed command structure going all the way down to the terrorists performing the acts. In fact many groups that may be funded and supplied by Al-Qaeda are not Al Qaeda but cells formed by groups of angry extremists in different parts of the world. Many of the things put down to Al-Qaeda or even caused by groups that are claimed to be Al-Qaeda are not 'Al-Qaeda' as such, to these guys its almost like a kid saying hes superman. Al-Qaeda is probably responsible for the support of many terrorist groups, but often the terrorist activities it takes part in it has little to do with expect financing or supporting, and thats why it hasn't been taken down, because its not just one groups at work here, its possibly a bit like Al-Qaeda is the body of the hydra, and the other groups are the heads. 19:10, 25 June 2007 (UTC)

Yes our goal is really world domination... it's a Catch22 though. It's more a way of perception. And our organization is world wide. Not all Jihadists are terrorists. 911 WAKE UP, the corruption can only be stacked so high before chaos erupts. Infidels forget the Power of Allah. Annuit Coeptis Novus Ordo Seclorum Make no mistake about it; it's a Holy War... Iraq was invaded, because it's the head of Babylon, Saddam himself resurrected the ruins. "Conventional Society" has a serious ignorance to the occult concepts, and I'm amazed at the lack of understanding of this in the "Land of the Free." All the sterile mainstream academics, neglecting the alchemy, the hermetics. You can hear more about the situation from a song than from most of them. Consider this an introduction from the Great Grandson of Allah (Allah Burlingame), child of Nephthy's... released on 9.11.02 for sending demons and the hellfire after my neighbor. Find more info on the BluMoonNow ( -search) handle. BlumoonNow 19:09, 16 August 2007 (UTC) BlumoonNow 19:14, 16 August 2007 (UTC)

  • ahem* Americans ignore occult concepts because they do not understand them. In American Society, Occults are considered bad things, considering America's history of murderous, suicidal, weird, etc cults. In fact, to most Americans, the definition of 'Occult' is basically anything that is gruesome, sick, twisted, etc. What can you say? Americans are fools.

Americans are not fools, the Constitution allows for people to speak whatever they want. Though I have to admit, America has had some weird and murderous cults, that does not give you the right to call Americans fools. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:03, 25 November 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia conventions

Objectives of the organisation

Can we include a section on the organisational objectives on the RHS Summary box? As in Everyunitone (talk) 19:52, 18 December 2007 (UTC)

OK, I've done a little research, and it seems that we can boil the long term objectives down into three items..

- “Quran-Based Authority to Govern.”

Establishment of a global caliphate government.

- “Liberation of the Homelands.”

Removal of Western (notably US) military, business and cultural influence on societies deemed to be 'Islamic'

- “Liberation of the Human Being.”

A social contract based upon benevolent governance and strong rights of the individual (where these do not interfere with the views of the sharia courts), especialy in respects to the overthrow of any development towards non-islamic leaders.

I would maybe suggest also including a item pointing out that specific actions often have their own set of communiques, ideas and objectives, and these are really event specific. I would say these all add up to a tapestry covered by the three main points though..

Source was here which I'd believe to be a reasonably good one. (the document was certainly well put together, kudos to the author).

I'm afraid I don't have the techincal know-how to insert it onto the main page, so I'll leave it to a fellow wikipedian to second the content and place it up.. Everyunitone (talk) 20:21, 18 December 2007 (UTC)

Living Persons Tag??

I looked through the archives to see if this question has been raised before; and seeing that it hasn't: why is the Biographies of Living Persons template on this article's talk page? This is the article on the group/organization/movement, not a biographic article on bin Laden or another person affiliated with the group. Is there another reason as to why the {{Blp}} is attached to this article? I'm really just curious. -Fsotrain09 21:14, 20 December 2006 (UTC)

Infobox Political Party

In The article the Political Party infobox is used. This may seem like a minor issue but i have serious problems with this. Al-Qaeda is not a political party it is a group of religious fanatics who MURDER innocent men, women and children. Had they atleast tried to engage in the political process as othergroups (such as the IRA) have i would have no problem with this. But in my opinion placing Al-Qaeda as a political party legitimises their methods. And as such i think this infobox should be removed. Any opinions? Pat 09:35, 18 February 2007 (UTC)

I put it there because the template is the closest thing we have in Wikipedia to represent the group. They are not a military unit, and should not be represented by that. They are not a state, and therefore do not deserve the infobox reserved for a country. As a global organization, it is also not appropriate to give them the infobox of a civil war faction like the Islamic Courts Union. The closest approximation to what we have in Wikipedia is a political party. Considering that Al Qaeda has political motives, the notion that we represent them as a political "party" is not unreasonable. Compare Hamas or Hezbollah which likewise use the political party box. --Petercorless 19:48, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
However Hamas and Hezbollah are actively involved in the political process, while Al-Qaeda is not. You arguement is specious. If you have a valid point feel free to make it. Furthermore to consider that Al-Qaedas motives are political ergo they should be represented as a political party is stupid. Were Al-Qaeda a political party they would be seeking a halfway peaceful resolution. It is therefore unreasonable to represent Al-Qaeda as a political party because that would require to stop slaughtering innocent women an children. Pat 21:54, 22 February 2007 (UTC)
I don't see what difference it makes. There isn't a large sign on the infobox stating political party, it's just the best template to summarise a few details about the group. The only mention of political party is in the wikicode itself - only people who edit the page see it, if they spot it even then. →Ollie (talkcontribs) 22:20, 22 February 2007 (UTC)
Thank you, Ollie. --Petercorless 22:23, 22 February 2007 (UTC)
Ok im willing to admit defeat lol Pat 13:28, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

Consider Replacing Political Party Box

does anyone know how to change the political party box into something different? such as replace "leader" with "main spokesperson" or something like that? the kind of categorization that accompanies the box is misleading about the kind of organization that al-qaeda is... 21:23, 11 June 2007 (UTC)

Copyedit tag

A quick glance (and I do mean quick), doesn't seem to indicate any major problems with the article. Is it okay to remove the tag? --Sigma 7 02:01, 12 May 2007 (UTC)

I think it can be removed now--a lot has been cleaned up recently, and the progress continues. Will remove now. SlipperyN 12:35, 14 May 2007 (UTC)

Images in the article


Flag of Jihad.svg

On War in Afghanistan (2001–present), the combatant al-Qaeda is depicted on the right hand infobox using the flag to the left . Yet it isnt show here. Is this the flag the organisation uses, or has it been chosen by an external influence? John Vandenberg 06:22, 14 January 2007 (UTC)

All Muslims believe that this is the flag of the Muhammad. Al Qaeda used this flag to gain sympathy from all Muslims. Another example is the Islamic Courts Union ICU in Somalia they used the same flag. What is written on the flag is Shahadah the first Pillar of Islam Islampedia 22:28, 14 January 2007 (UTC)

Agreed. Al-Qaeda has no exclusive use of this flag. Also see: Hizb ut-Tahrir, Islamic Khilafah ... Interestingly, the Taliban's official flag was the inverse of black script on white. Again, that is not an exclusive use of the Shadadah. Other organizations use it too. --Petercorless 04:18, 15 January 2007 (UTC)

Please correct me if I am wrong, but I don't believe that the sources of either the flag image on this page or the flag image on the article page meet the Wikipedia standards for reliable sources Wikipedia:Reliable sources. Both are based on what someone says the flag looked like when they saw it. Should an alternate image be used in the article?--Nowa 21:53, 19 January 2007 (UTC)

These flags, for example, are said to fly over the graves of certain Al Qaida fighters. The photo is allegedly from AP, but I cannot find the original source. --Nowa 22:02, 19 January 2007 (UTC)

WTF?? THIS IS NOT AL-QAEDA FLAG ? This is a Flag containing the Shahada of Islam. Many Many organizations uses this flag and they have nothing to do with Al-Qaeda. Please DELETE THIS Flag from this page. ANd also, this flag wasn't taken from a reliable source ! —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 19 February 2007.

This has recently been used to justify the flag, however it clearly says it is for Jihad in general, as part of the flag of Islamic Khilafah. To associate Al-Qaeda with the Jihad flag is a very long shot; brilliant reliable sources will be needed before I will countenance it as it looks like a logical fallacy: Unless all Al-Qaeda is the official Jihad organisation of the Muslim world, the flag is more general than Al-Qaeda. If the flag is being used by Al-Qaeda, it is because they consider their operation to be a Jihad; unless that Jihad is official endorsed. In short, this flag should not be used indiscriminately to "fill in an infobox". If you need such an image, try this one. John Vandenberg 01:07, 17 March 2007 (UTC)

More than one image of bin Laden shows him in front of a "flag of Jihad", seeming to give evidence for the flag being adopted by, and a representation of, al-Qaeda. The fact that the flag is used by other groups means nothing to its appropriateness for al-Qaeda. If Zimbabwe adopted a new national flag tomorrow, and that flag just happened to be that of the United Nations, that wouldn't make it any less the flag of Zimbabwe. The fact that the inverse, a black Shahada on a white background, is accepted as the flag of the Taliban, and of Afghanistan under Taliban rule, when that flag is also not exclusive to the Taliban should be a further indication that adoption and use by a group of a flag makes that flag the flag of that group, regardless of its use elsewhere. Lexicon (talk) 18:32, 17 March 2007 (UTC)
If Zimbabwe adopted the United Nations, it would be inappropriate to use that flag as the icon to signify Zimbabwe as a party to a conflict that they participated in, as it causes more confusion that it solves. i.e. using that flag would be disinformation and pandering to the POV that the Zimbabwe govt would be trying to spread.
I am also not in favour of the "black Shahada on a white background" being used for the flag of Taliban, but I havent researched that one so I dont hold as strong a position and subsequently wont remove it unless there is consensus.
Flags are chosen to be distinct from other flags in order that they are representative; in the case of the al-Qaeda flag, it was co-opted to assume representation, which unless it is well-founded, is inappropriate. John Vandenberg 23:28, 17 March 2007 (UTC)
Our enemy in this war "on terror" is not just al Qaeda, it is the whole Jihadist movement of which al Qaeda is just the most organized part. So I think that the flag is quite appropriate for al Qaeda. JRSpriggs 12:01, 18 March 2007 (UTC)
IMO, by using this flag, we are misappropriating a Muslim icon to represent an enemy in the war on "terror". In effect, using this flag for the enemy combatant defines Islam as the enemy. Perhaps that isn't too far from the truth.
I have no problem with the flag being used further down in the article with prose describing how it is being used. However unless a government or a number of reputable publications use this flag to signify al Qaeda, Wikipedia shouldnt officially tag the organisation with this flag. John Vandenberg 13:13, 18 March 2007 (UTC)
If anyone "misappropriated" the flag, it was the Jihadists in general and al Qaeda in particular. Complaining that we use it to represent them makes as little sense as complaining that we use the Swastika flag to represent the Nazis when it is a Hindu religious symbol. JRSpriggs 06:39, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Swastika was not used as a Hindu symbol but "a Nordic rune", and no Hindus use this a battle symbol. This flag is not Osama's but Muhammad's (see picture from the article), and dates well earlier than the flags of Zimbabwe or United Nations, or the United States for that matter. --HanzoHattori 08:20, 17 April 2007 (UTC)

Flag of al-Qaeda

Shouldn't we use this image in the article?--Steven X 07:31, 1 June 2007 (UTC)

Flag of al-Qaeda

No, because it cannot be confirmed, despite the presence of other unconfirmed 'facts' in the article. But hey, this is an American site, so its majority vote. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:17, 4 October 2007 (UTC)

The attacks image

I don't think it should be the first thing for readers to see (at the top), it's a little POV to have it there, both by it possibly implying either good reasons to propagate hostility against them, or showing their "achievements". -- 19:31, 15 February 2007 (UTC)

Your objection is noted, yet this was put there instead of other images which have been objected to in the past including pictures of Osama bin Laden, the flag of Al-Qaeda, and other images. Remember that the subject is controversial, and that any picture could be objected to. However, this is not a graphical depiction such as, say, a photograph of a bomb attack. In the overall context of what could have been shown, it seems mild. What is your suggestion for a suitable image? --Petercorless 21:06, 15 February 2007 (UTC)
Well, I thought of other more or less extremist groups that came into my mind (regarding your last question). I thought of the template on Hamas' page, for example. -- 00:56, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
Good idea. --Petercorless 09:06, 16 February 2007 (UTC)

Other arguments for, or justifications of, edits

Al-Qaeda UK??

Does anyone think the link Al-Qaeda UK is of any merit to the article at all? Lukelastic 20:56, 29 December 2006 (UTC)

It doesn't seem like a terribly serious site. And clearly not connected to any form of official al Qaeda stuff. If indeed 'official' is a meaningful term in this context. I see the link has been removed from the article, and support this decision. This article is here to provide an informative introduction to the terrorist organisation Al Qaeda, not to collect all miscellaneous information with the words 'Al Qaeda' in it on the internet. -- TinaSparkle 10:10, 7 January 2007 (UTC)
Thanks for taking a look at it Tina... However, I do think its discussion of some serious issues is of some merit. Are the pages - now in a separate satire section - what you mean by 'It doesn't seem like a terribly serious site.'? I agree that the term 'official' is not very relevant; likewise, anyone can claim to represent al Qaeda and act as they please. Is this merely a philosophical distinction, or is it a relevant one when discussing al Qaeda? Lukelastic 14:41, 9 January 2007 (UTC)


Although it has appeared in some papers the name "Abu Taha al-Sudan" is erroneous and should be "Abu Taha al-Sudani". Tried to fix it but I don't have the credentials :) LDH 08:38, 2 January 2007 (UTC)

There are many, many, many different variations of Arabic names translated to English. It's been an especial problem with the Somali war. I have found it easier to simply make referrals/aliases than try to correct all variants. --Petercorless 03:06, 10 January 2007 (UTC)

Al-Qaeda and the internet

I've been trying to solve the references problem for this section, but I can't find anything referencing how the December 2004 video bypassed al-Jazeera. If we can't find anything, the assertion should be removed until a source if found.akronpow 15:44, 14 February 2007 (UTC)

Attack on nuclear plants overstated

I deleted the following line

Had these attacks gone ahead, most of the eastern seaboard of the United States would have been devastated.

for two reasons. First, the cited sources made no claim as to the severity of an attack on a nuclear plant. It is well known that nuclear plants are designed with direct plane crashes in mind. Doesn't mean that they can handle a direct hit by a fully-fueled jet and shut down relatively safely, but they are hard targets with a lot of concrete and smaller than the targets that were actually hit in the attacks. The certainty evoked above is unwarranted. Even if nuclear plants are effectively destroyed, that doesn't necessarily mean that you have a radiation event that "devastates" large areas. Much depends on what state the core is in (eg, are control rods inserted?) and how promptly they can put out the fire and cover the pile if it is exposed. OTOH, wide spread devastation is possible which is more than can be said for the choice they actually made.

Second, unusual POV attention seems to be played to this particular choice. It appears from the cited news sources that the 9/11 planners studied a variety of targets and plans before they settled on the number of planes and the targets. -- KarlHallowell 22:08, 4 April 2007 (UTC)

Just deleted
, most likely an attack on Afganistan by the United States' nuclear weapons
While this probably is a valid worry (if they achieved a really successful attack on a nuclear plant) the linked articles fail to back up the assertion. It isn't clear what their concerns were here. -- KarlHallowell 17:42, 6 April 2007 (UTC)

Proposal to clean-up introduction

I know several people have done nice work incrementally cleaning up this article, but I think a major overhaul of the introduction is still necessary. The main issue I see is that there is lots of unreferenced material, much of which is either too detailed or speculative for the intro anyway and so can be moved to the appropriate sections. I propose to do this, but I thought I'd post here first to see if anyone has thoughts about the best way to accomplish the goal of increasing clarity in the intro. I think eventually a similar reorganization of the body, especially of the subtopics, will be necessary, but first things first! SlipperyN 14:49, 8 May 2007 (UTC)

I am implementing some of these changes now, with the goal of simplifying and streamlining the introduction only. The material I cut was all both unreferenced and redundant with info later in the text. Let's discuss here if you think anything overly important *for the intro* was cut. SlipperyN 20:07, 9 May 2007 (UTC)


I have issues with the way the Etymology section is written. The controversy, starting with "An alternative theory..." does not flow well with the rest of the section and is internally inconsistent. First it says that OBL named the group himself years ago; then it says that the Justice Department named al-Qaida in 2001 for the embassy trial. Then Cook says it came from the CIA database; then it shows up in Clinton docs in 1998; and finally, we have internal AQ memos from 1988. They can't all be true, and if Bergen has the memos (I haven't read the book), it seems like we should give that more weight than the speculation.

Then, the three paragraphs beginning with "Former British foreign secretary..." is poorly written, misleading, and very POV. The section about an "engineered army" is not sourced and is not supported by the Cook article. That third paragraph implies that PNAC doc talks about the idea of an "enemy of convenience", when it mentions nothing of the sort.

I think we need to go with the earliest date we have evidence for (which would appear to be 1988). The rest of the debate needs its own "Controversy" section. As it stands, it's confusing and nearly unreadable. Thoughts? --Dchall1 21:42, 8 May 2007 (UTC)

I just removed the Robin Cook bit. It was poorly researched and badly integrated. It was placed between a paragraph about the Power of Nightmares and a follow on paragraph, thus rendering the latter completely senseless. Also the word "base" and "database" may be similar in English, but not in Arabic. The term "al-qaeda" just doesn't mean database (see other talk comment above). There are potentially details that could be salvaged from the text in question so I include it below:

Former British foreign secretary was probably most accurate when he described the name al-Qaeda as arising from a CIA database (hence base) which was created in the 1980's. The CIA created the database to hold the details of the fighters it was supporting with money, training and weapons to fight the Soviet army in Afghanistan at the time. The article in which Robin Cook elaborates his idea was published in the UK Guardian newspaper in July 2005, [6]. At the time Robin Cook believed that bin-Laden, and al-Qaeda, were products of a monumental miscalculation by western security agencies. Another interpretation would suggest that there had not been any miscalculation by the western security agencies. Meaning that al-Qaeda, is and was an engineered 'army' now forming a convenient enemy. The ranks are filled with provocateured fighters against which a western military industrial complex can a wage war in order to secure vital strategic resources and energy pipelines on the Eurasian continent; as has occurred in the years following 9/11 (September 11th 2001). This strategy, of securing hydrocarbon resources, was outlined by influential geostrategist, and former presidential advisor Zbiginew Brzezinski; in his book The_Grand_Chessboard: American Primacy And It's Geostrategic Imperatives'. This strategy and a similar theme, was also encapsulated in the document pubished in 2000, by the conservative (neo-conservative) think tank, 'Project For A New American Century' (or PNAC), titled 'Rebuilding America's Defences' [7].

I think the etymology section could be much better written, but we need to continue to represent the fact that there are differing theories about when the organization was formed, so I don't advocate removing the "inconsistencies". In the testimony of Jamal al-Fadl, he claims to have been present at the first meeting of al-Qaeda in either late 1989 or in 1990. His testimony has been called into question though because of his history of fraud and the possibility that his testimony was tainted by ulterior motives. The fact that statements issued by Bin Laden prior to 9/11 such as the 1998 fatwa were issued under names other than al-Qaeda raises difficult questions if it was the name his group was going by.--Distinguisher 03:06, 9 May 2007 (UTC)
No objections. Maybe something we need to consider is that we're trying to apply our conecpt of a named group to OBL. Regardless of when he started using "al-Qaida", the core group of people opposed to the US has existed for a while. But it's not like a corporation or a fraternity, where you can say "on this day the group did not exist, and on the next day it did." Maybe we have to accept that the best we can do is say "OBL had these ideas around this date, and around this date he applied a name to himself and the people who thought like him." --Dchall1 05:48, 9 May 2007 (UTC)
I have a somewhat different issue: I don't the etymology debate deserves to be the very first section, especially given its current length. This seems like a debate of specialist interest rather than for the general user of the entry. Any objections if I move it lower in the section hierarchy, and possibly copy-edit to make it shorter and more concise? SlipperyN 20:11, 9 May 2007 (UTC)
I think the title of the section should be changed to "the origin of the name al-Qaeda". Actually, I'm going to do that now. Very little in this section is actually about etymology per se. Where else could it fit in the article if it were moved? --Distinguisher 20:50, 9 May 2007 (UTC)
Did some copy editing on it too. It hopefully flows a little better now. --Distinguisher 21:25, 9 May 2007 (UTC)
Nice edits, and I think in this form it makes a nice start to the article. SlipperyN 15:18, 10 May 2007 (UTC)

Moazzam Begg

I copyedited the Introduction and Etymology section -- spelling, typing, grammar, and syntax changes only. I am confused by the first sentence in the last paragraph in the Etymology section. The sentence appears to be saying that Moazzam Begg asked for a definition of Al Qaeda. And that doesn't make any sense to me. Why would Begg have asked his American interrogators for a definition of Al Qaeda? Kathy 22:40, 6 May 2007 (UTC)

Activity in Iraq Section

This section is in need of real work. I have done some searching, and I'm unable to find evidence to support a number of the unreferenced claims throughout this section--indeed the bulk of the evidence I'm finding directly contradicts the notion that al-Qaeda is responsible for a large proportion of attacks in Iraq. I'd like to revise this section accordingly, but I want to see if others have access to sources I don't before doing so. Thoughts? SlipperyN 18:52, 10 May 2007 (UTC)

I've made this clean-up and removed the references and controversy tags. I had to delete some unreferenced material for which I could find no support; if someone has additional references, they would be welcome.SlipperyN 16:31, 14 May 2007 (UTC)
You've really improved this article a lot recently. Thanks.--Distinguisher 20:31, 14 May 2007 (UTC)
Thanks for the positive feedback! I think this article is really coming along, and after a bit more minor editing will be in solid shape! SlipperyN 16:27, 15 May 2007 (UTC)

bin Laden and al-Zawahiri in Syria??

Am I the only one that questions this assertion? I have not seen a single media source that indicates that they are living in Syria. It is assumed that they are in the mountainous borders of Pakistan/Afghanistan. This is a highly dubious statement. Mormonchess 17:38, 18 May 2007 (UTC)

It's unsourced and far out, so I removed it. Dchall1 18:01, 18 May 2007 (UTC)

for the record

I removed:

On July 1, 2006, a Web-posted message purportedly written by Osama bin Laden urged Somalis to build an Islamic state in the country, and warned Western countries that his al-Qaeda network would fight against them if they intervened there.[4]

On November 26, 2006, the U.S. Embassy in Kenya issued a travel alert to US citizens regarding travel to Kenya or Ethiopia after letters allegedly written by the Somalian leader of the Islamic Courts Union (ICU), Sheik Hassan Dahir Aweys, encouraged suicide terrorist attacks on US citizens in those two countries.[5]

On November 30, 2006, the Somali Transitional Federal Government (TFG) claimed three suicide bombings costing eight lives were the work of al-Qaeda operatives working in the country.[6]

On December 14, 2006, the US Assistant Secretary of State Jendayi Frazer warned that al-Qaeda cell operatives were controlling the Islamic Courts Union (ICU), the Islamist faction of Somalia rapidly taking control of the southern area of the country.[7] The next day, December 15, 2006, ICU Information Secretary Abdirahim Ali Mudey denied the allegation as baseless.[8] That same day Frazer announced the United States has no intention of committing troops to Somalia to root out al-Qaeda.[9]

On December 20, 2006, war in Somalia erupted between the ICU and the Transitional Federal Government and Ethiopian allies. Salad Ali Jelle, Defence Minister of Somalia's Transitional Federal Government, claimed Abu Taha al-Sudan led the Islamists fighting against the government in the town of Iidale. On December 25, 2006, Ethiopia began bombing two airports in Somalia. In justifying the attack, the Ethiopian prime minister Meles Zenawi stated that his country was "at war" with Islamist militants in Somalia.

American officials state that Ras Kamboni served as a training camp for extremists with connections to al-Qaeda.[10][11] US security concerns in the Horn of Africa, particularly at Ras Kamboni, heightened after the attacks on 9/11. On December 16, 2001, Paul Wolfowitz said the US was meeting with various Somali and Ethiopian contacts to "observe, survey possible escape routes, possible sanctuaries" for al-Qaeda operatives.[12] On March 2, 2002 a briefing was held in the Pentagon to discuss the possible use of Ras Kamboni by terrorist groups, including al-Ittihaad al-Islamiya (AIAI) and al-Qaeda.[13] In December 2002, the U.S. established the Combined Joint Task Force - Horn of Africa (CJTF-HOA) to monitor developments in the region and train local militaries on counterterrorism.[14]

On January 8, 2007, during the Battle of Ras Kamboni, it was reported an AC-130 gunship belonging to the United States military had attacked suspected al-Qaeda operatives in southern Somalia. It was also reported that the aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower had been moved into striking distance.[15] The gunship flew out of its base in Djibouti. Many bodies were spotted on the ground, but the identity of the dead or wounded was not yet established. The targeted leaders were tracked by the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) as they headed south from Mogadishu starting on December 28.[13]

On February 15, in Houston, Texas, U.S. citizen Daniel Joseph Maldonado (Daniel Aljughaifi) was charged with "training from a foreign terrorist organization and conspiring to use an explosive device outside the United States." He had been extradited by Kenyan authorities after he fled there. In the charges, it was alleged he took part in training at camps near Kismayo and Jilib where members of al-Qaeda were present and was willing to become a suicide bomber if he became wounded.[16]

Whee! --HanzoHattori 00:29, 23 May 2007 (UTC)

The article is crappy

Which is amazing, since I thought this article would be perfect given the ammount of attention everywhere.

I de-crapped it a bit. --HanzoHattori 00:37, 23 May 2007 (UTC)

Completely agree. Lots of weasel phrases including "some organizational specialists", "are believed", and "has been known" instead of citations in sections that have been tagged as requiring sources for nealy a year. Addhoc 14:16, 28 May 2007 (UTC)
Oh, and just see what you get instead of al-Qaeda in Iraq - Jama'at al-Tawhid wal-Jihad, a badly-done, severely outdated (2004!), and absolutely misleading ("Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, who himself was never Al Qaeda") article. That's it, Wikipedia is completely worthless when it comes to this subject.
The last time it even remotely resembled anything being not completely crap was there: It was by no means good even back then, but now it's almost beyond repair but scrapping altogether and starting anew. --HanzoHattori 14:01, 30 May 2007 (UTC)

Removed Obvious Spam Link

Just removed a plainly obvious spam link advertising PS3's, nothing else.

Alex. 19:21, 26 May 2007 (UTC)

I thought Bush said Al-Qaeda didn't have anything to do with 9-11

add to the list: the organization of Al Qaeda in Palestine

Also calling itself Army of Islam.[8] --HanzoHattori 07:40, 22 April 2007 (UTC)

He did it?

Anyone notice that The_Lizard_Wizard took credit for an Israeli hotel bombing? [9]

The first country to seek the arrest of Bin Laden  ?

The first country in the world to seek the arrest of Osama bin Laden was Libya according to the Interpol Secretary General Ronald. K Noble Islampedia 02:49, 8 January 2007 (UTC)

Extensive new info in today's (02 Apr 2007) NY Times

I don't have time to integrate it into the article, but there's much that's new:

source needed: CIA funding and training

. Al-Qaeda was supported, trained and funded with billions of dollars by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) of the US government to fight against the invading Soviet armies in the Soviet war in Afghanistan[citation needed]

The above was deleted from the article. I believe it is widely known, though I am not so sure about the amount ("billions"). However, a source has been demanded. Since I am not an intelligence expert, I'm having trouble finding a reliable one. Please help. I know Zbigniew Brzezinski also wrote about this. — Xiutwel ♫☻♥♪ (talk) 20:12, 19 July 2007 (UTC)

It is widely believed, but not correct. Al-Qaeda as an organization did not exist until well after the Afghan War. Yes the CIA funded various mujahideen groups, but not bin Laden. All this is covered within the article already. Dchall1 20:30, 19 July 2007 (UTC)
Please read these sources:
The foundations of al-Qaida were built in part on relationships and weaponry that came from U.S. support for the Afghan mujahadin during the war to expel Soviet forces from that country.[17] The role of the U.S. in arming, training, and supporting the radical Islamic Mujihadeen of Afghanistan in the 1980s has been called the model for state-sponsored terrorism.[18] --NYCJosh 19:08, 24 July 2007 (UTC)
Those are two unsupported opinions from sources that do not appear to meet WP:RS. I don't see how they are relevant here. You want to claim CIA funded Al-Qaeda? OK, how much money was sent from whom to whom and at what time? What weapon systems were provided to bin Laden when? Who trained bin Laden and what was he trained in? You won't find the answers to these questions because they don't exist. The CIA funded mujahideen in Afghanistan, but it did not directly fund or train the Arab jihadists who came from around the world. (Arguably there was indirect funding through ISI but even that is difficult to establish verifiably). If you want the more direct connection between the US and the Afghan Arabs, you need to look at US support for Saudi Arabia and other "friendly" Muslim nations, whom we encouraged to help the effort in Afghanistan by providing support for warriors who wanted to fight jihad in Afghanistan. Bin Laden was never on the US payroll, but the Saudis, with US encouragement, funded the journey of many mujahideen to Afghanistan to fight the Soviets. csloat 02:41, 25 July 2007 (UTC)

"Eritrea" section

I guess it's some Ethiopian. It's really annoying because it's not the first time. --HanzoHattori 16:10, 4 August 2007 (UTC)

Again. Would SOMEONE do SOMETHING with this? (I don't even know who does this, but it's not first and not second time.) --HanzoHattori 09:16, 15 August 2007 (UTC)

Islamofascism defined

Islamofascism, n. a label applied to all expressions of Islam by Islamophobes, intentionally seeking to draw a fallacious analogy between Islam and Nazi Germany. This label is thus the equivalent of the Blood libel used against the Jews in 19th century Europe (which, again, sought to fallaciously link the practices of Judaism and human sacrifice.) It would be great if Wikipedia wouold not endorse such bigotry on its pages.

Not true. Islamofascism is a label applied to expressions of Islam that bear a strong resemblance to the fascist movment of the 1920, 30s and 20s. It bears no resemblance to any Blood libel used against the Jews.
And please sign your comments. --BoogaLouie 20:05, 14 August 2007 (UTC)

Islamofascism is not a real word. "Fascism is an authoritarian political ideology (generally tied to a mass movement) that considers individual and other societal interests subordinate to the needs of the state, and seeks to forge a type of national unity, usually based on, but not limited to, ethnic, cultural, or racial attributes." - it would be something like (say) Saddam's Iraq if talking about the Arabs, not a bunch of guys blowing up random targets round the world. --HanzoHattori 09:17, 15 August 2007 (UTC)

The term is Islamicfacism, it is not a phobic term. It refers to groups like Al Quada and Hezbollah who misuse Islam to justify terrorism against non moslems and those moslems that do not agree with their version. It is a valid term accepted all over the world.Kirin4 09:57, 16 September 2007 (UTC)

Organisation/ Structure - Power of Nightmares not a reliable source

I agree with the comments earlier that query BBC2 documentary, Power of Nightmares as a reliable source. The article is generally very good, so this is jars with the rest of the content. The Power of Nightmares was essentially a polemic, with archive footage cut together with straight voice over. In other words, it is pure POV. I don't think it really strictly falls into the category of documentary, more an illustrated opinion piece - which although it may be thought provoking doesn't really belong in a piece striving for NPOV.

To include it here, is blurring the distinction between comment and fact. Also I think you'd need another source backing Curtis' claims - is there one? Only read a few books on Al Qaida, by Corbin and Burke - both contradict The Power of Nightmares' central claim that it's a construct of the neo-cons. Both those books are a combination of first hand journalism, combined with research.

Perhaps the reference should come out? Adamjamesbromley 14:54, 13 August 2007 (UTC)

The documentary does not state that Al Qaeda is a construct of the neo-cons, that is a subjective reading of the documentary itself. The documentary claims that the naming of Al Qaeda was carried out by the US Justice Department in order to prosecute Bin Laden in abscencia using laws designed to prosecute organized crime networks such as the Mafia. The section of the documentary which makes this claim is direct testimony from Jason Burke - who as you have pointed out is a reliable source, therefore the reference should stay, perhaps adding that it is Burke's testimony which makes this claim. (although a direct reference to Burke's book Al Qaeda would be preferable). Pexise 23:43, 13 August 2007 (UTC)
That sounds like a good improvement. Adamjamesbromley 13:16, 14 August 2007 (UTC)

Tagged for POV

why the looooonnnng The origin of the name "al-Qaeda" section featuring long undue weight quotes from an old docueditorial?

This section has been discussed at length on this talk page. Take note of that. The issue of where the name came from is a topic of contention, which is why that detail is there.--Distinguisher 10:59, 22 August 2007 (UTC)
Maybe it should be spun off as a seperate article then. It's way too long. Much research has been done on al-Qaeda since that "documentary" came out. --BoogaLouie 15:55, 22 August 2007 (UTC)
I don't agree that it's too long. If there is independent evidence supporting al-Fadl's testimony or supporting the view that bin Laden's influence was not exaggerated, then it should be discussed in the article too so that any misperceptions can be openly corrected. A discussion of controversies about the scale and reach of al Qaeda is definitely something that should go in the main article in my opinion.--Distinguisher 20:42, 23 August 2007 (UTC)
So lets spin it off as another article. in any case why is it in a section called The origin of the name "al-Qaeda"??
Right now we have a lead calling al-Qaeda an "alliance", with unencyclopedic editorializing like Although the governments opposed to al-Qaeda claim that it has worldwide reach,[16] other analysts have suggested that those governments, as well as Osama bin Laden himself, exaggerate al-Qaeda's significance in Islamist terrorism.[17]
A section called al-Qaeda#The origin of the name "al-Qaeda" with seven lines of quote from an old documentary complaining about an alleged US government image "of an all-powerful figure." Few if anyone believes that bin Laden is "all powerful," or that al-Qaeda has a "organised network of control". This needs major work. --BoogaLouie 21:55, 7 September 2007 (UTC)

"counterrevolution against the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan"? The "revolution" killed an estimated 27,000 political prisoners were executed, including many village mullahs and headmen. Other members of the traditional elite, the religious establishment and intelligentsia fled the country.

"The U.S. provided weapons to Osama Bin Laden in the 1980s as part of the CIA's support for the Afghan insurgency. Osama was one of the CIA's best weapons customers," is disputed by the people on the ground in afghanistan. ISI controlled the arms and gave none to the afghan arabs. Afghan Arabs

"Armed and trained by the U.S. and Saudia Arabia, among others" is crap too.

"Iran is a predominantly Shi'ite country. They have beliefs that conflict with Sunni interpretations of Islam. For example, they believe that the successors to their prophet Muhammad should have been members of Muhammad's family," What is this doing in the middle of an encyclopedic article on al-Qaeda???

This article needs a major overhaul. --BoogaLouie 21:21, 22 August 2007 (UTC)

For the last time: UIC = not al-Qaeda

Just like Taliban is not al-Qaeda. OK? --HanzoHattori 22:26, 23 August 2007 (UTC)

I just reverted you; sorry. Now I understand - in future try to be clearer in your edit summaries. Eleland 22:29, 23 August 2007 (UTC)

Look It even used to be even "Refuge in Eritrea" (repeatedly). You know, just under the "Refuge in Afghanistan" section. It was totally like OMG SO BIN LADEN IS NOW IN THIS, UH...ERITREA for a casual reader.

The current stuff was about Eritrea supporting their enemy's enemy, that is the Somalis fighting against the Ethiopians. A typical proxy war. The AQ link is alleged and indirect (US officials say "terrorism" not "al-Qaeda", and they mean all Islamist resistance.) --HanzoHattori 22:44, 23 August 2007 (UTC)

P.C Idoacy

It is bad enough Wikipedia refuses to call Hezbollah a terrorist group but now refuse to identify a group who the U.N, and most of the world does. What is next you can call some 2.5 meters tall? Put terrorist in the first sentance.Kirin4 19:11, 15 September 2007 (UTC)

what are you even talking about? I hope english isn't your first language. 02:41, 17 September 2007 (UTC)

the date of the first trade center attack needs to be corrected 1993 is not good enough

On the 26 February 1993 an attack took place the world trade center New York —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:37, 17 September 2007 (UTC)


Mabye this page should be protected incase some people take this ifi-ifi article about terroism to vandalise it.....just thinking?Aflumpire 03:43, 18 September 2007 (UTC)

Problems with article lead

Lead violates Wikipedia:Lead section guidelines. "the lead section should briefly summarize the most important points covered in an article in such a way that it can stand on its own as a concise version of the article "

Instead of summarizing its history and what al-Qaeda has done, there's a long bit on how the US government defines terrorism, and a sentence on "al-Qaedaism" a term I personally have never heard used. --BoogaLouie 15:13, 5 October 2007 (UTC)


Shuldn't we add something about Obelisk?Evenfiel 02:30, 26 October 2007 (UTC)

Go for it. --FOo 03:11, 26 October 2007 (UTC)

CIA and bin Laden

I've created a separate article called Allegations of CIA assistance to Osama bin Laden since the issue comes up so much in other articles like al-Qaeda and Afghan Arabs. I'm going to trim some text from this article and add a link to the new article. --BoogaLouie 19:13, 24 October 2007 (UTC)

I think that page should be deleted; it seems to be a POV Fork whose only purpose is to give credence to a conspiracy theory that has been addressed. If we are going to keep the page - and there is a reasonable argument not to delete it - it should not be in the form of "Allegations" and "Denials" but rather a coherent account of CIA activity in afghanistan in the 80s and of the rise of al Qaeda. There is no reason to treat the demonstrably false allegation of CIA funding of OBL as a matter of equal dispute. csloat 03:16, 1 November 2007 (UTC)

September 11, 2001, attacks and the United States response

Just removed a reference to "most observers" that read like it was put in by a Truther. No sane "observers" believe that anyone other than al-Qaeda was behind 9/11. Just because there's a Flat Earth Society, doesn't mean the page on Earth needs to state that "most observers believe the earth is round". Let's just keep to the facts and remain conspiracy theory free. Captain Smartass 17:16, 4 November 2007 (UTC)

Useful reference for early history of Qaeda

A recent study from the Combating Terrorism Center at West Point (Cracks in the Foundation: Leadership Schisms in al-Qa’ida from 1989-2006) has some interesting history and leadership information on AQ. I don't have time to do much with this now, but it might be useful for improving the historical sections of this article. —johndburger 14:53, 5 November 2007 (UTC)

Moved unreferenced sentence to talk page

I found this sentence in the article without any references:

It is alleged that many of the Arab Mujahedin who gained combat experience in Afghanistan were later involved in terrorist acts against the U.S.

It sounds like speculation. I moved it here in compliance with Wikipedia's verifiability policy. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:06, 13 November 2007 (UTC)

Cleaning up "Expanding Operations" section

First of all, in compliance with WP:V I moved this section here due to total lack of references:

In November 1989, Ali Mohammed, a former special forces Sergeant stationed at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, left military service and moved to Santa Clara, California. He traveled to Afghanistan and Pakistan and became deeply involved with bin Laden's plans. A year later, on November 8, 1990, the FBI raided the New Jersey home of Mohammed's associate El Sayyid Nosair, discovering a great deal of evidence of terrorist plots, including plans to blow up New York City skyscrapers.

Secondly, I added the POV-section tag to the section since apart from the last sentence it's entirely based on the account of one blog entry. The person who wrote the blog is said to have interviewed Bin Laden. This does not mean what is says is reliable. It certainly isn't verifiable. Since there are no other references to support the claims made in this section it is biased.

I have Wikipedia policy on my side here so this tag stays until more references are added, or the section is rewritten to overcome the bias. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:21, 13 November 2007 (UTC)

I am reverting both of these edits. On your first objection, the paragraph on Ali Mohammed is sourced in his dedicated article. An "unsourced" tag would have sufficed, rather than removing the paragraph to the talk page. In the second case, Peter Bergen is a respected journalist and a notable source. The blog posting is an exceprt from his book. If we had the book as a direct souce, that would be great, but I don't see how the fact that this information is presented on a blog makes it unreliable. Aside from this objection, I don't see how the section qualifies for an NPOV tag. Dchall1 00:31, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

Cleanup of section "Gulf War and the start of U.S. enmity"

I moved this part of the section to the talk page in compliance with WP:V:

In the face of a seemingly massive Iraqi military presence, Saudi Arabia's own forces were well armed but far outnumbered. Bin Laden offered the services of his mujahedeen to King Fahd to protect Saudi Arabia from the Iraqi army.
The Saudi monarch refused bin Laden's offer, opting instead to allow U.S. and allied forces to deploy on Saudi territory.

The references in the section don't support these claims so they are unreferenced. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:28, 13 November 2007 (UTC)

I have also reverted this edit, as the source is available on the Osama bin Laden page. I have added it here for your convenience. Dchall1 00:40, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

Insufficient references in section "Sudan"

This section makes some bold statements about Bin Laden's time in Sudan but only references two books and nothing else. I would like to see the paragraphs that are references copied in the references. Until then this section is not verifiable for people that don't own these two books. Hence I added the refimprove tag on this section. It shall remain there until these references are improved. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:37, 13 November 2007 (UTC)

None of this material is controversial, books are reliable sources, and sources do not have to be online to be verifiable. If you have contradictory sources, please feel free to add them. Otherwise, I'm removing the tag. Dchall1 00:43, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

Cleanup of section "Refuge in Afghanistan"

I moved the unreferenced parts of this section here, in compliance with WP:V:

, and much of its funding came from private donations from wealthy Arabs, for whom bin Laden provided conduit. A further four leading figures (including the perceived Taliban leader Mullah Mohammed Omar Mujahed) attended a similarly funded and influenced madrassa in Kandahar, Afghanistan.
Many of the mujahedeen who later joined the Taliban fought alongside Afghan warlord Mohammad Nabi Mohammadi's Harkat i Inqilabi group at the time of the Russian invasion. This group also enjoyed the loyalty of most Afghan Arab fighters.
The continuing internecine strife between various factions, and accompanying lawlessness following the Soviet withdrawal, enabled the growing and well-disciplined Taliban to expand their control over territory in Afghanistan, and they came to establish an enclave which it called the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan. In 1994, they captured the regional center of Kandahar, and after making rapid territorial gains thereafter, conquered the capital city Kabul in September 1996.
After Sudan made it clear that bin Laden and his group were no longer welcome that year, Taliban-controlled Afghanistan — with previously established connections between the groups, a similar outlook on world affairs and largely isolated from American political influence and military power — provided a perfect location for al-Qaeda to establish its headquarters. Al-Qaeda enjoyed the Taliban's protection and a measure of legitimacy as part of their Ministry of Defense, although only Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates recognized the Taliban as the legitimate government of Afghanistan.
Al-Qaeda training camps in Afghanistan and the Pakistani border regions are alleged to have trained militant Muslims from around the world.[citation needed] Despite the perception of some people, al-Qaeda members are ethnically diverse and connected by their radical version of Islam.
An ever-expanding network of supporters thus enjoyed a safe haven in Taliban-controlled Afghanistan until the Taliban were defeated by a combination of local forces and United States air power in 2001 (see section September 11, attacks and the United States response). Osama bin Laden and other al-Qaeda leaders are still believed to be located in areas where the population is sympathetic to the Taliban in Afghanistan or the border Tribal Areas of Pakistan.
Again, this is information not generally considered controversial. If you have any specific statements that you wish to challenge, please add a citation tag. As it is, you have removed the majority of the section. Dchall1 00:48, 14 November 2007 (UTC)
Whether this is controversial or not is not the point. The first two paragraphs are unsourced so should be deleted according to WP:V policy. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:27, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

Unsufficient references for section "The first terrorist attack"

This section makes pretty bold statements. There are two references to a book called The Looming Tower that just reference page numbers. This reference is not verifiable by people who don't own the book. I would like to see the paragraphs from this book that serve as reference copied in both references in this section. For this reason I add the refimprove tag which shall stay there until the references are indeed improved. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:51, 13 November 2007 (UTC)

Please see my above comments about books as sources. Dchall1 00:49, 14 November 2007 (UTC)
"a book called The Looming Tower" won a pulizer prize and is based on years of work and dozens of interviews of Muslims involved in or dealing with al-Qaeda. It even has its own wikipedia article. I'm sorry you can't make it to the library, Anon, but I don't think that makes the information given from it unverifiable. --BoogaLouie 20:56, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

quotations from source for section "The first terrorist attack"

"December 29, 1992, a bomb exploded in the Movenpick Hotel in Aden, Yemen, and another blew up prematurely in the parking lot a nearby luxury hotel, the Goldmohur. The bombers had targeted American troops who were on their way to Somalia to participate in Operation Restore Hope, the international famine relief effort. In fact, the soldiers were staying in a different hotel altogether. Bin Laden would later claim credit for this blundered attack, which was barely noticed in the United States, since no Americans died. The troops went on to Somalia as scheduled, but the triumphant leaders of al-Qaeda told themselves that they had frightened the Americans away and scored an easy victory.

"... Two people died, an Australian tourist and a Yemeni hotel worker, and seven others, mostly Yemenis, were severely injured. Behind the delirious, self-congratulatory chatter in Sudan, moral questions posed themselves, ..." (Looming Tower p.174)

"One Thursday evening, Abu Hajer addressed the ethics of killing innocent people. He spoke to the men about Ibn Taymiyyah, a thirteenth-century scholar who is one of the primary references for Wahhabi philosophy. In his day, Ibn Taymiyyah confronted the problem of the Mongols, who savaged Baghdad but then converted to Islam. Was it proper to take revenge against fellow Muslims? Ibn Taymiyyah argued that just because the Mongols had made the profession of faith, they were still not true believers, and therefore they could be killed. Moreover, as Abu Hajer explained to the 30 or 40 al-Qaeda members who were sitting on the carpet in bin Laden's salon, propping their elbows on the bolsters and sipping mango juice, Ibn Taymiyyah had issued a historic fatwa: Anyone who aided the Mongols, who bought goods from them or sold to them or was merely standing near them, might be killed as well. If he is a good Muslim, he will go to Paradise; if he is bad, he will go to hell, and good riddance. Thus the dead tourist and the hotel worker [killed in the Aden Yemen bombing] would find their proper reward.[source: testimony of Jamal al-Fadl, U.S. v. Usama bin Laden,]

"A new vision of al-Qaeda was born. Abu Hajer's two fatwas, the first authorizing the attacks on American troops and the second, the murder of innocents, turned al-Qaeda into a global terrorist organization. Al-Qaeda would concentrate not on fighting armies but on killing civilians. The former conception of al-Qaeda as a mobile army of mujahideen that would defend Muslim lands wherever they were threatened was now cast aside in favor of a policy of permanent subversion of the West. ... (Looming Tower p.174-5) --BoogaLouie 21:19, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

Cleanup of section "September 11, 2001, attacks and the United States response"

This may be the juiciest two phrases in this entire article. Alas they are completely unreferenced which is why I moved them here in compliance with WP:V:

The September 11, 2001, attacks were conducted by al-Qaeda, acting in accord with the 1998 fatwa issued against the United States and its allies by military forces under the command of bin Laden, al-Zawahiri, and others.[19] Evidence points to suicide squads led by al-Qaeda military commander Mohammed Atta as the culprits of the attacks, with bin Laden, Ayman al-Zawahiri, Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, and Hambali as the key planners and part of the political and military command. Messages issued by bin Laden after September 11,2001 praised the attacks, and explained their motivation while denying any involvement.[20]
Actually, those statements are well referenced, and are referenced in even more detail on the article dedicated to the attacks. Dchall1 00:51, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

Bosnian connection

I have recently written an article on the Bosnian Mujahideen. In reasearching it I have come accross quite a few sources relating to the presence of Al Qaeda (or persons later connected with Al Qaeda). The most pertinent source would be a a book and a research paper by Evan F. Kohlmann with the title The Afghan-Bosnian Mujahideen Network in Europe. Kohlmann is a terrorism researcher and a consultant to the Nine/Eleven Finding Answers Foundation and runs the Web site []. Should/could we include this in the article?Osli73 16:21, 4 December 2007 (UTC)

I would like to replace the current text in the Bosnia section with a new one. The main reason is that the current text spends more time on explaining how the majority of the local Bosniak population didn't sympathise with the foreign Mujahideen rather than explaining the importance of Bosnia and the Bosnian War to Al Qaeda. The latter is also the main point of Kohlmann's paper and book on The Afghan-Bosnian Mujahideen Network in Europe. Instead, I suggest that we replace the current text with a text from the Bosnian Mujahideen article. It reads:

Following the end of the Bosnian War and, especially, after the 11 September attacks on the World Trade Center, the links between the Bosnian Mujahideen, Al Qaeda and the radicalization of some European Muslims has become more widely discussed. In an interview with US journalist Jim Leherer former US peace envoy to Bosnia Richard Holbroke states:

There were over 1,000 people in the country who belonged to what we then called Mujahideen freedom fighters. We now know that that was al-Qaida. I'd never heard the word before, but we knew who they were. And if you look at the 9/11 hijackers, several of those hijackers were trained or fought in Bosnia. We cleaned them out, and they had to move much further east into Afghanistan. So if it hadn't been for Dayton, we would have been fighting the terrorists deep in the ravines and caves of Central Bosnia in the heart of Europe.

In 1996, in a book titled "Offensive In the Balkans", Mr. Yossef Bodansky, Director of the Republican Task Force on Terrorism and Unconventional Warfare of the US House of Representatives, wrote as follows on the "Bosnian Jehad":

"...The build-up of new Islamist units was completed in Bosnia- Herzegovina in the Spring of 1995. These forces are closely associated with the Armed Islamist Movement (AIM) and Islamist international terrorismsuicide terrorists), both veteran Arabs and newly trained Bosnians.

London's The Spectator has noted, "If Western intervention in Afghanistan created the mujahedin, Western intervention in Bosnia appears to have globalised it." Several current and former top al-Qaeda militants and financers reportedly participated in the Bosnian civil war with the full support of the United States. It was for the Bosnian jihad that the 9/11 'paymaster', Omar Sheikh, was reportedly recruited to fight by the CIA and MI6. Al-Qada, in addition to his reported financing of the Bosnian jihad, has been identified as one of Osama bin Laden's "chief money launderers". In his paper on the connection between Bosnian mujahideen and 'home grown' terrorists in Europe, terrorism expert Evan F. Kohlmann writes that:

Indeed, some of the most important factors behind the contemporary radicalization of European Muslim youth can be found in Bosnia-Herzegovina, where the cream of the Arab mujahideen from Afghanistan tested their battle skills in the post-Soviet era and mobilized a new generation of pan-Islamic revolutionaries.

I suspect that this text will be opposed by a number of 'Bosnian' editors but despite this believe that it is superior to the current text. Your comments are welcome.Osli73 (talk) 21:07, 6 December 2007 (UTC)

I would support the inclusion of this information, provided it is well-sourced. It is undeniable that foreign fighters entered the conflict on the side of the Bosniaks to conduct jihad. Moreover, the government is still struggling with what to with those fighters who stayed. As long as there is strong evidence that at least some of those fighters are or were affiliated with al-Qaeda (I can't speak to that), the information definitely belongs. Dchall1 (talk) 01:53, 8 December 2007 (UTC)

Dchall1, as you'll see from the sources provided in the suggested text (see also the Bosnian Mujahideen article) the connection between the Bosnian Mujahideen participating in the Bosnian War and al Qaeda is widely acknoweledged (Holbrook, Kohlmann, etc).Osli73 (talk) 01:59, 8 December 2007 (UTC)
Based on a quick look at your sources, I don't think I have any objection to the passage as written. Dchall1 (talk) 02:08, 8 December 2007 (UTC)

"If Western intervention in Afghanistan created the mujahedin, Western intervention in Bosnia appears to have globalised it." No, it was the Soviet intervention in Afghanistan, and the Western non-intervention in Bosnia (and foreign in general, as the UN involvement was only a very black joke). If the strong Western (NATO) response to the Serbian agression happened in 1992, and not in 1995, there would be no Arab volunteer problem at all. --HanzoHattori (talk) 21:14, 13 December 2007 (UTC)

Yes, had the West shown active involvement in the crisis in 1992, there would be no problem with the Mujahideen. But we didn't, and we tolerated their presence in Bosnia instead of lifting the arms embargo ourselves. Not until after Sept. 11th did the US become concerned about their presence there. This point is important and well-documented. Dchall1 (talk) 15:18, 14 December 2007 (UTC)

Hanzo and Dchall1, you're both correct about the timing and motives of US concern for the presence of mujahideen in Bosnia. However, the text in the article should focus on describing the Al Qaeda presence/link to Bosnia, not trying to analyze the reasons for it and how it could have been avoided (which immediately risks entering into POV mined territory). As users The Dragon of Bosnia and Grandy Grandy both seem intent on replacing any serious attempts to describe the nature of the link with grossly POV text (see the current version), I would appreciate your participation on this matter. Otherwise the options are either to accept their grossly POV versions or be dragged into meaningless revert wars (which I am becoming tired of).Osli73 (talk) 15:49, 14 December 2007 (UTC)

With all due respect, I must comment Osli73's claims. He says he is having problems with me and user:Grandy, which is wrong. He is just having problems with Wikipedia policies and guidelines. If you look at his block log he is constantly blocked because he permanently breaks Wikipedia rules:

  • 00:49, 5 September 2006 Blnguyen blocked Osli73 with an expiry time of 96 hours (did about 10 reverts on Srebrenica massacre in about 2 hours)
  • 09:48, 18 December 2006 Srikeit blocked Osli73 with an expiry time of 1 week (Sockpuppeteering and directly violating his arbcom probation and revert parole)
  • 01:48, 1 March 2007 Jayjg blocked Osli7 (anon. only, account creation blocked) with an expiry time of 2 weeks ‎(violation of arbcom revert parole on Srebrenica massacre again)
  • 02:26, 23 March 2007 Thatcher131 blocked Osli73 (anon. only, account creation blocked, autoblock disabled) with an expiry time of 2 weeks ‎ (violating revert limit on Srebrenica massacre see Wikipedia:Requests_for_arbitration/Kosovo)
  • 07:37, 24 July 2007 WikiLeon blocked Osli73 (account creation blocked) with an expiry time of 3 months ‎ ({{UsernameHardBlocked}}: {{arbcom}})
  • 07:45, 24 July 2007 WikiLeon blocked Osli73 (account creation blocked) with an expiry time of 1 month ‎({{arbcom}})
  • 12:23, 5 December 2007 Stifle blocked Osli73 (account creation blocked) with an expiry time of 24 hours ‎ (Three-revert rule violation: Bosnian Mujahideen

Regarding his claims that the problems are results of the nationalist POV being pushed in the articles, I can't agree on that. If you look at the history of those articles you will find this:

  • Osli73, wrote Bosnian Mujahideen in order to replace the existing article with the offical and precise terms 7th Muslim Brigade. He also nominated 7th Muslim Brigade for deletion after he wrote Bosnian Mujahideen (which is mostly based on WP:NOT content). And he made up this term Bosnian Mujahideen. There are no relaible sources with these two words together. There are such terms as these: Mujahideen, Arab fighters, foreign volunteers etc. but Bosnian Mujahideen is fabricated as well as the link to Al Qaeda.

Dragon of Bosnia, a couple of comments to the above:

  1. the version of the text I proposed already on 8 December deals with the connection between Al Qaeda and Bosnia and the role of the Bosnian Mujahideen in this.
  2. the version you are proposing is WP:COATRACK to discuss the nature of the Bosnian Mujahideen rather than discussing the connection between Bosnia and Al Qaeda
  3. the mediation on the Bosnian Mujahideen article was requested by me as a means to stop you vandalism of the article and any links to it. So, the mediation is in no way equivalent to a afd or other discussion.

Osli73 (talk) 19:00, 23 December 2007 (UTC)

Does Al-Qaeda target Halliburton/KBR?

Do Al-Qaeda intentionally target US civilian contractors or only military personnel? (talk) 21:00, 13 December 2007 (UTC)

They aren't exactly discriminate in their targets. --HanzoHattori (talk) 21:06, 13 December 2007 (UTC)--HanzoHattori (talk) 21:06, 13 December 2007 (UTC)

"Terrorist" in the lead sentence.

"Terrorist" is an POV term when used to refer to something, and such, must not be unless the subject themselves admits to the descriptor - e.g. we can say Hitler was a Nazi, as he was the leader of the National Socialist Party, but we can't say he was evil, no matter how many sources that say that. We can say "he is regarded as evil by X, Y, Z", where it's sourced, but not convey the opinion ourselves. For that reason, I have removed that word. It's mentioned two paragraphs below anyway. Will (talk) 12:00, 19 December 2007 (UTC)

Al-Qaeda not terrorists, just "Islamic militants"?

User:Sceptre thinks that calling Al-Qaeda "terrorist" is non-NPOV. I disagree. What follows is from a discussion that went on on User talk:Sceptre. (talk) 13:05, 19 December 2007 (UTC)

I saw your revert on al-Qaeda. I don't think it's dreadfully POV to call Al-Qaeda a "terrorist" organization. Whether you're Liberal or Conservative, Socialist or Nazi, I think we can all agree that Bin Laden and Al-Qaeda are terrorists. (talk) 11:16, 19 December 2007 (UTC)

Yes, I do agree they are terrorists. But it's still a point of view - there's the old adage "one man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter" - and thus should not be in article-space. We can say they are classed as terrorists by country X, Y, and Z, but we can't convery an opinion themselves. Will (talk) 11:52, 19 December 2007 (UTC)
Neutral POV does not mean no POV. Calling them terrorists is not a controversial opinion, but a fact, according to the definition of terrorism by every state agency and public policy think-tank. Only Islamic extremists themselves dispute the claim of terrorism. NPOV is not a consensus between the mainstream and the fringe. (talk) 12:00, 19 December 2007 (UTC)

Please read this: "Let the facts speak for themselves" - this is what I'm trying to say. There may and probably is be a sizeable portion of people who think al-Qaeda are doing the "Right Thing™" and are not terrorists, so the word remains POV unless otherwise. Will (talk) 12:05, 19 December 2007 (UTC)

It doesn't apply to extremist views, because fairness of tone with regard to extremism is non-NPOV. Imagine an article on the Holocaust which read, "The overwhelming majority of scholars believe the Holocaust happened. However, some dispute the existence of the Holocaust." (talk) 12:10, 19 December 2007 (UTC)
There is. Will (talk) 12:18, 19 December 2007 (UTC)

Not exactly. They receive a blanket condemnation from "scholars," who judge their methodology as poor, which is a POV. From the article on Holocaust denial:

Many Holocaust deniers do not accept the term "denial" as an appropriate description of their point of view, and use the term Holocaust revisionism instead. Scholars, however, prefer the term "denial" to differentiate Holocaust deniers from historical revisionists, who use established historical methodologies.

Based on what you said above, this should be changed to read:

Most scholars, however, prefer the term "denial" to differentiate Holocaust deniers from historical revisionists, because they claim the former do not use established historical methodologies as revisionists do. (talk) 12:27, 19 December 2007 (UTC)

Still, can you explain why the word "terrorist" is not a POV term? You can hold the point of view that al-Qaeda are terrorists, but it's not fact until al-Qaeda themselves say they are. They are a militant organisation as they've admitted that much. But we can't say they're terrorists as people can say easily say they're freedom fighters. (both terms are as extreme as each other, and the opposite POV can be held by millions in the Middle East) Will (talk) 12:40, 19 December 2007 (UTC)
This actually happens. Remember this young computer wiz who used the screen name of "Terrorist 007"? --HanzoHattori (talk) 14:02, 19 December 2007 (UTC)

Every term bears some kind of POV, even the term "Islamic militant group." They have characterized their violence as defensive rather than offensive. As an example of what I mean, should we refer to the Sons of Liberty as an "American militant organization"? Al-Qaeda does not have millions of supporters in the Middle East. And, in any case, you yourself have argued that extremists use NPOV to create articles which lean in their favor. Lastly, the term "terrorist" is used pretty abundantly throughout the entire article on Al-Qaeda. Wait, nevermind. It looks like you've removed several of them! (talk) 12:48, 19 December 2007 (UTC)

With your last post, you're just trolling. Consider yourself ignored. Will (talk) 12:56, 19 December 2007 (UTC)

And now you attack me? If I am trolling, what is my motive? Will, you are belligerent, arrogant, and have absolutely no regard for WP:CONSENSUS. That's why I reviewed your edits and I see that this is a pattern of disruptive behavior. (talk) 13:01, 19 December 2007 (UTC)

It is quite possible to let people see for themselves that Al-Qaeda are terrorist by most people's (including me) standards. We should do what we do with Hamas: say what they do (kill civilians for political reasons) and say that nearly everyone calls them terrorists (both with citations), but not say ourselves that they're terrorist. Superm401 - Talk 08:06, 27 December 2007 (UTC)

Question: If it is so obvious that al Qaeda are terrorists -- why not, as the other guy said -- let the verifiable information speak for itself, and let readers form their own conclusion? One trouble with outright calling Hitler "evil", or calling OBL a terrorist is that it sets the bar low, and sets the example that this term can be used carelessly here. There are equally sincere people who are convinced that, that the USA has, in fact, bombed civilian targets to punish civilians, or to terrorize them not to cooperate with the Talian and al Qaeda.
If you take a look at Abib Sarajudin, and his three fellow villagers. The Taliban weren't all that popular, even among the Pashtuns, the ethnic all the Taliban were from. In the fall of 2001 when the USA called for the Afghan people to join them in ousting the Taliban even Pashtuns complied. Including Abib Sarajudin. Abib Sarajudin complied when a tribal elder asked him to rally fighters from his small village, and four neighboring villages populated by his tribe. He was asked to raise these troops to serve under another member of his tribe. Pacha Khan Zadran -- a guy who already commanded some fighters. The campaign didn't take too long. And he was home by November. And Pacha Khan Zadran was one of the militia leaders who had contributed enough troops that he was invited to Bonn, to sit with the Nortern Alliance militia leaders, and endorse Hamid Karzai as the new President.
Then the USA bombed his house. He was injured. His wife was killed, together with half a dozen members of his extended family. Tribal elders gave him some funds to rebuild his house.
Two months later some American troops show up, for an investigation. A classic case of "shoot first, as questions later." They search the entire village. And apprehend Abib Sarajudin, his brother, nephew and a neighbor. Why did they want him? Some tipster told them that when the Taliban leaders fled one senior leader's flight took him through this village, he asked for a night's hospitality from Sarajudin, and Sarajudin agreed.
Note: When the USA bombed his house, they didn't believe that the Taliban leader was in the house when they bombed it. They merely believed he had once been hosted there. So was bombing Sarajudin's house a legitimate act of war? Or was it an act of retaliation against civilians -- and thus a violation of the Geneva Conventions, and a war crime?
Being careful not to apply this term, because it seems obvious to us a group is terrorist, helps prevent edit-warring when it seems obvious to someone else that someone else, like George Bush is a terrorist. Let's let readers reach their own conclusion as to whether al Qaeda is terrorist, and reach their own conclusion as to whether George Bush is a terrorist.
Cheers! Geo Swan (talk) 14:56, 28 December 2007 (UTC)

Commas and periods go inside the quote marks

If you're going to edit the world's largest encyclopedia please use proper grammar. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:05, 20 February 2008 (UTC)

I encourage you to make changes here when you see something incorrect :) Kingturtle (talk) 16:07, 28 February 2008 (UTC)
> If you're going to edit the world's largest encyclopedia please use proper grammar.
OK, but commas and periods do not necessarily go inside the quote marks. See Wikipedia:Manual_of_Style#Quotation_marks
It would also help if you learned some basic Wikipedia preferences, like getting a user-name instead of editing anonymously, placing new talk page entries at the bottom of the page instead of at the top, and "signing" your entries. --RenniePet (talk) 18:16, 28 February 2008 (UTC)
The way I generally work, both in my profession and on Wikipedia, is to keep commas and periods within quotation marks only when such quotations actually denote speech. If using quotation marks like "this" to identify a proper name or somesuch, for example as in "The United Kingdom", I wouldn't put the comma inside the quotation marks because technically they are not quotation marks at all in this context.
And I'm by no means the only one to do things this way. However I'd be interested to hear what others think about this and if it's a generally accepted paradigm or if I've just been lucky to get away with my personal preference for all these years. :) Tomalak Geret'kal (talk) 06:52, 31 March 2008 (UTC)