Will Obama ignore the Al Qaeda-Iranian link?

If so, we must ask why and we must ask loudly:

The attempted Christmas Day underwear bombing of Northwest Flight 253 may have Iranian fingerprints, but those are dots the Obama administration doesn’t want to connect.

Iran and al Qaeda have made mutual war on America in Yemen before. In November 2008, Western security officials intercepted a letter signed by bin Laden deputy Ayman al-Zawahiri thanking Iran for its “vision” in helping al Qaeda establish a foothold in Yemen after being routed from Iraq and Saudi Arabia. The terror leader praised Tehran for its “monetary and infrastructure assistance” related to a September 2008 attack on the U.S. Embassy in Yemen’s capital Sana’a. Sixteen people were killed in the attack, which featured machine gun and rocket fire supporting a double suicide car bombing.

The Obama administration, eager to curry favor with the Islamic regime in Tehran, has downplayed the Iranian connection to al Qaeda in Yemen. In December, Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs Jeffrey Feltman noted “theories” of Iranian involvement in Yemen, but said the United States does not have “independent information” corroborating them. In any case, he said it was in the “collective interest” of countries in the region to “narrow” the conflict in Yemen, though this assertion seems more based on a fervent wish for peace than a realistic assessment of Iranian interests.

Al Qaeda’s interests are obvious. At his confirmation hearing in May, Mr. Feltman said that the United States is “deploying new approaches to the threat posed by Iran with our eyes wide open and with no illusions.” The Obama team might want to open their eyes a little wider.

Actually, given history, they’re likely to narrow their eyes and ignore what is increasingly obvious to the rest of us.

And at some point, the American people will have to wonder why and demand some answers hopefully before a mushroom cloud is seen above one of our larger cities.

H/T to Steve Schippert of ThreatsWatch, via email, who wrote a related piece back in ’07:

Understanding the nature of the enemy is fundamental to successfully engaging that enemy, be it on the battlefields of metal and flesh, the battlefields of ideas, or the battlefields of information and communication. To this end, it is absolutely critical that the West – and the American public in particular – understand that, unlike the way the American political landscape so often appears, our terrorist enemies are often more willing to lay aside their fundamental and substantive differences for the purposes of engaging a mutual enemy. There is no greater example of this than the cooperation between Sunni al-Qaeda leadership and that of Shi’a Hizballah and their Iranian masters.

Reading the rest would be wise.

Crossposted(*).

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