Zarqawi’s Growing Tensions with Mainstream Sunni Iraqis

Evan Kohlmann points to growing tension between Zarqawi’s al Qaeda in Iraq and ordinary Iraqi Sunnis:

I have obtained copies of pamphlets allegedly being distributed by Al-Qaida’s Committee in Iraq–led by Jordanian Abu Musab al-Zarqawi–strenuously urging Iraqi Sunnis to abstain from participation in the upcoming national elections scheduled for December 15. The pamphlets reflect a surprising degree of hysteria on the part of Al-Qaida and growing bitterness towards moderate Sunnis that is not nearly as evident in Zarqawi’s other recent publications and communiques.

He provides several examples.

This is obviously good news. While it’s true that Zarqawi’s thugs have continued their murder spree unabated after previous elections, the fact that everyone concedes that the Sunnis are not going to sit this one out seems to indicate growing legitimacy of the new government and the diminution of same for the terrorists.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. McGehee says:

    Ironically, we may have Zarqawi himself to thank for increased Sunni participation if it does indeed come about.

    Is there anything Darth Rove can’t do?