Senior Al Qaeda member moves to Syria

Al Qaeda members in Syria.
Picture from static2.businessinsider

Al Qaeda members in Syria. Picture from static2.businessinsider

Matt DeGraff, Staff Writer

One of Al Qaeda’s senior leadership people, Sanafi al Nasr, has relocated to Syria.

Al Nasr is living openly in Syria, using his twitter account to communicate to his followers.

Sophomore Cameron Kuo said, “It doesn’t feel right to me that someone who is a known terrorist leader can just be out in the open somewhere doing what he wants and nobody does anything. I do not like that at all.”

Nasr is not a well-known name to most people, however he is still well established in the Al Qaeda community. Almost all of his six brothers have fought for or with the Al Qaeda network, and at least one was held at Guantanamo Bay.  Nasr is also a third cousin of Osama bin Laden.

Nasr is a member of Saudi Arabia’s wanted list and is also a member of Al Qaeda’s “Victory Committee,” which sets policy and long term strategy for the Al Qaeda network.

Many Al Qaeda senior members and lesser members have been moving to Syria.  This move from a group traditionally based in Pakistan shows how little resistance there is to terrorist groups in Syria right now.

Sophomore Vincent Todesco said, “I think it is a little scary in Syria right now with the civil war and now I guess all these terrorist groups moving there now.  I would really hate to live there, I feel really bad for all the people that do, it must be really scary knowing that there are all those dangerous people right around the corner.”

All of the moves to Syria from Pakistan by Al Qaeda members leads some to think that the traditional view of Al Qaeda with its Pakistan based leadership is at best outdated or was even wrong to begin with.

Sophomore Jake Kumamoto said, “I have always thought of Al Qaeda as pretty much a terrorist group from Pakistan or maybe Iran.  But, I guess they are bigger than that, they are more completely from all of the Middle East or at least it seems they can be safe in most of it.”

Kumamoto also said, “I definitely never thought of Syria as a terrorist state, I just saw it as one of those little states in that area that doesn’t really do much, but it looks like I was wrong.”

Al Nasr also shows that Al Qaeda has not been destroyed, even though it has had many senior members killed recently. He exemplifies that leaders from affiliate groups can still be leaders in Al Qaeda.

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