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September 27, 2011 Special Dispatch No. 4169

Inspire 7 – American Jihadi Samir Khan: 'A Powerful Media Production is as Hard-Hitting as an Operation in America'

September 27, 2011
Special Dispatch No. 4169

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In an article in the seventh issue of Inspire, Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula's English-language magazine, U.S.-born Samir Khan hails Al-Qaeda's "media jihad" as a component in the war against the U.S. that is of equal importance to actual attacks on it. Khan asserts that Al-Qaeda has won the preliminary stages of the battle for the hearts and minds of Muslims, thus ensuring that the organization's ideology will live on. One of the reasons for this victory, he explains, lies in the fact that the West and the media present Al-Qaeda's ideology as nothing but terrorism, whereas the organization's creed is that of Islam, a fact that earns it the support of Muslims.

Khan concludes the article by listing the four key elements which enable Al-Qaeda to win the media war: the technological savvy of Al-Qaeda's media operatives, the U.S.'s failure to respond to Al-Qaeda's propaganda, the U.S.'s media "blunders" which damage its image in Muslim public opinion, and the general suspicion in which Muslims view the U.S.

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