Pakistan's Al Qaeda Safe Haven, Six Months Later

Via TPM's Must Read, we have an update from the Times on the battle in Afghanistan, with a special emphasis on the Al Qaeda safe-zone the Pakistani government set up on September 5th, 2006.
Senior leaders of Al Qaeda operating from Pakistan have re-established significant control over their once-battered worldwide terror network and over the past year have set up a band of training camps in the tribal regions near the Afghan border, according to American intelligence and counterterrorism officials.

Officials said the training camps had yet to reach the size and level of sophistication of the Qaeda camps established in Afghanistan under Taliban rule. But groups of 10 to 20 men are being trained at the camps, the officials said, and the Qaeda infrastructure in the region is gradually becoming more mature....

“The chain of command has been re-established,” said one American government official, who said that the Qaeda “leadership command and control is robust.”...

Bruce Hoffman, a terrorism expert at Georgetown University, told the House Armed Services Committee last week that Al Qaeda “is on the march.” He said, “Al Qaeda in fact is now functioning exactly as its founder and leader, Osama bin Laden, envisioned it,” because, he said, Qaeda leaders are planning major attacks and inspiring militants to carry out attacks around the globe.

Staunch ally in the War on Terrorism, indeed.

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