7,161. 1/13/2008

"The Sunni insurgent group al-Qaeda in Iraq is telling its followers to soften their tactics in order to regain popular support in the western province of Anbar, where Sunni tribes have turned against the organization and begun working with U.S. forces, according to group leaders and American intelligence officials. The new approach was outlined last month in an internal communique that orders members to avoid killing Sunni civilians who have not sympathized with the U.S.-backed tribesmen or the government. 'Dedicate yourself to fighting the true enemy only, in order to avoid opening up new fronts against the Sunni Arabs,' said the Jan. 13 [2008] communique, signed by the leader of al-Qaeda in Iraq, Abu Hamza al-Muhajer. 'Do not close the door of repentance in the face of those Sunnis who turned against us,' said the message, posted in Anbar mosques frequented by the group's followers."

 – Amit R. Paley, “Shift in Tactics Aims to Revive Struggling Insurgency,” The Washington Post, Feb. 8, 2008,

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