5,552. 1/15/2004

Al Qaeda in Iraq leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi’s ‘Letter to Bin Laden and Zawahiri’ was intercepted by Iraqi Kurds in January 2004. It said: “After study and reflection, we can classify our enemy into four groups: The Americans[:] As you know, they are the most cowardly of men. They are an easy prey. …We ask God to enable us to kill and capture them, in order to sow panic…and to trade them for our sheikhs and brothers in jail. The Kurds[:] These are a calamity, but they are a thorn it is not yet time to extract. They are on our list. Soldiers, Police and Collaborators[:] These are the eyes, ears, and arms of the occupier. We are determined to strike them hard in the coming months, before the situation has stabilized and they are able to consolidate their grip. The Heretics [Shiites:] …They are the key to change, because attacking their religious, political, and military aspects will reveal their rage against the Sunnis.” [The 15th of the month used for date sorting purposes only.]

 – Gilles Kepel and Jean-Pierre Milelli, eds., Al Qaeda In Its Own Words, Page 262

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