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Judging Al Qaeda’s Record, Part II: Why Has Al Qaeda Declined? | Lawfare
U.S. Army Photo

Judging Al Qaeda’s Record, Part II: Why Has Al Qaeda Declined? | Lawfare

In a previous post, I argued that the organization of Al Qaeda declined even as the movement it championed remains robust. No single factor explains Al Qaeda’s problems since the September 11th attacks, but I believe the most consequential reasons for this decline include its underestimation of the U.S.-led counterterrorism campaign and the associated loss of its haven and global infrastructure; its killing of Muslim civilians; and the lack of a strong base among the people it claims to represent.

Al Qaeda anticipated, and may have even sought out, U.S. retaliation for 9/11. The ineffective U.S. response to the 1998 embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania and the 2000 attack on USS Cole convinced Al Qaeda leaders that it could strike the United States and emerge stronger as a result.

Source: Judging Al Qaeda’s Record, Part II: Why Has Al Qaeda Declined? – Lawfare