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May 26, 2010 Special Dispatch No. 2975

Indicted USS Cole Bomber Fahd Al-Quso in New AQAP Video: We Will Strike the U.S. Homeland, Embassies, and Warships

May 26, 2010
Yemen | Special Dispatch No. 2975

On May 26, 2010, Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) released a 55-minute video containing new statements by Fahd Al-Quso, a senior Al-Qaeda operative who is under U.S. indictment for his alleged role in the USS Cole bombing. This is the first time that Al-Quso, whom Yemen released from prison in 2007, has appeared in an AQAP production. The new release is also the origin of the footage of Christmas Day bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab that was leaked to ABC; the video contains no additional footage of Abdulmutallab beyond that broadcast by ABC in late April 2010, in which he makes a brief statement in support of AQAP's jihad and is shown taking part in firearms training.

In addition, the video contains statements by Othman Al-Ghamdi, a former Guantanamo Bay detainee whom the video now refers to as an AQAP commander, as well as Qasim Al-Rimi, AQAP's chief military commander. The video is dated Rabi' I 1431, i.e. February-March 2010.

The video is in a narrative-documentary format and focuses on a number of standard AQAP themes: the U.S.'s direct involvement in airstrikes on Yemeni territory, the deaths of women and children in these airstrikes, and the treachery of the Yemeni government. The video praises the Yemeni tribes and mentions the tribal affiliations of the various AQAP operatives it eulogizes. A number of them are from the 'Awalik, Anwar Al-Awlaki's tribe. Fahd Al-Quso, himself from the 'Awalik, specifically mentions Anwar Al-Awlaki, saying:

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