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Inside Al Qaeda’s New Offensive in North Africa

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image Weapons from Libya making their way in the Sahel

The North Africa Journal: As we warned in an earlier assessment, Al Qaeda’s North Africa franchise, AQIM (Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb) appears to be on the move with what may be a fresh offensive in the region. Having been sidelined by the popular revolts that have swept the Greater Mid-East North Africa zone, the death of Osama Bin Laden, the fragile state of Tunisia’s transition, the state of nervousness in Algeria and Morocco amid calls for democracy, and the chaos in Libya are providing an opening for AQIM to both position itself in light of a new geopolitical environment and to strike again to regain global opinion’s mind share.

But there is also no conclusive evidence that all the criminal acts committed by alleged Al Qaeda elements are indeed AQIM’s work. There is also no doubt that as governments are toppled or at risk, it is highly possible that shadowy elements are at work to undermine any progress on the democratic front. A good example of that would be the sabotage and other criminal acts 

perpetrated by pro-Ben Ali agents, many of whom were arrested, others still unaccounted for. Their acts can be often disguised as AQIM’s acts for the purpose of creating confusion. The same must be said about Libya’s Gaddafi clan. While they clearly hired mercenaries to conduct their misdeeds, they is a strong likelihood that Gaddafi agents may be stirring trouble in the name of Al Qaeda. Other nations may be involved in similar practices... Continue here | Click here to subscribe

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