On September 29, 2014, Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) released a new video message from one of its spokesmen, Nasr bin 'Ali Al-Ansi, in which he calls for attacks on American and Western targets everywhere in response to the attacks launched by the U.S.-led international coalition against the Islamic State and against Al-Qaeda in Iraq and Syria.
Al-Ansi begins by denouncing what he describes as the second global was against Islam (the first being the invasion of Afghanistan in 2001 and of Iraq in 2003). The first stage of this second global war, he says, was the Israeli offensive on Gaza, followed by the Houthi rebels' takeover of large parts of the Yemeni capital and then the launch of the Western campaign in Syria and Iraq. He adds that this war is a conspiracy between the "Crusaders" [the West] and the "Safavids" [the Shi'ites], with the collaboration and compliance of the Arab governments, and urges the Yemenites to rally around the mujahideen and join them in jihad against the Houthis.
Al-Ansi states that the U.S. is the main party responsible for the war against the Muslims, and therefore must be attacked, but that the Arab states that are helping it in its current effort in Iraq and Syria will be harmed as well. He concludes his message by promising Muslims that victory is near. The clip ends with footage of AQAP fighters preparing and carrying out an attack on a Houthi force.
Al-Ansi, a 39-year old Yemeni cleric, is a veteran of the jihad in Bosnia and Afghanistan and was an associate of Osama bin Laden. He joined AQAP in 2011. This is his first video appearance on behalf of the group.
The video was posted on a Twitter account associated with AQAP. Below are excerpts from Al-Ansi's statements with regard to the West. To view a MEMRI-TV clip of excerpts from the video, click below:
"...As for the Crusader coalition, which is baring its fangs in Iraq and Syria… In light of this plot of deceit, the Muslims must put aside their disputes and unite their ranks and efforts against their Crusader enemy. They must establish an alliance to strike at the Imam of falsehood and head of heresy. Allah said: 'Fight against the unbelievers collectively, as they fight against you collectively [Koran 9:36].' Repelling the invading enemy is a [duty to be performed] unconditionally, as the scholars have said.
"[Fighters] on all fronts must attack the U.S. and its interests wherever they may be. We know who our main enemy is. For decades, America has been supporting the Jews who occupy Palestine. American drones have been bombing Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia, Pakistan, and Yemen. They have killed mujahideen and their leaders, as well as many Muslim civilians. They have destroyed homes and terrorized women and children.
"It should be known that America is the head of the serpent. It is America that is running the show and acting against the mujahideen, and their Islamic enterprise. As for the countries in the coalition that are supporting America, they will pay a steep price for joining this coalition. America will ultimately desert them... When the head falls so do the tails, and it becomes easier to torment them and wreak vengeance upon them.
"These follies of America will constitute the final nail in its coffin... It has already had a taste of the might of the mujahideen in Iraq, from where it pulled out in defeat and disappointment. Now the U.S. is back to relive the experience in detail... The Shi'ites, who rode upon their tanks yesterday, are now preparing the ground for [America] to take power, in order to carry out the same crimes against the Sunnis. The White House did not learn the lesson and did not learn from the experience. Playing with the card of sectarianism did not benefit America in the past, and it won't benefit it today, either."