By Joe Macaron, KUNA,
Washington : A US official Tuesday described the tape by Al-Qaeda’s second man Ayman Zawahiri about President-elect Barack Obama as “insulting and un-Muslim” and affirmed that the next US Administration will follow aggressive policies against terrorism.
“The incoming US administration is as pro-American and anti-terror as the one that left or even more so, it will be aggressive on solutions”, said State Department coordinator for counterterrorism Ambassador Dell Dailey in an interview with KUNA.
Dailey said that Obama “will keep the war on terror at the same level or increase it significantly,” but noted that the allocation of resources could not be significant in light of the financial challenges facing the United States.
“There are many sound policies that the Obama administration will look at to see whether they should be enhanced, discarded, or kept in place,” he added.
Dailey also noted that the Obama administration would “probably fix some of the perception of the United States and some of the causes that allow individuals to become terrorists.” “The United States is a democratic nation, we elected an African American, with Hussain as a middle name. But, he won the popular vote because of his policies and his American perspective of solutions,” he added.
Zawahiri assaulted Obama in an internet audio message last week describing him as a “house negro.” The US official described this message as “insulting and un-Muslim”.
“We see that as an example of how unaware and mean-spirited Al-Zawahiri is, how unrepentant Al-Qaeda is,” said Dailey.
“We are proud of this election and people like Al-Zawahiri do not have an understanding of democracy, modernization, individual rights, and globalization,” he added.
The State Department official said that Al-Qaeda leadership in Iraq has been “picked apart” by the Iraqi security forces, noting that the leadership has been killed or captured while their networks have been infiltrated.
“We think Al-Qaeda’s capacity is extremely limited and that its effectiveness has been minimized dramatically since the Iraqi people said ‘enough is enough’, starting in Anbar province,” said Dailey.
“Al-Qaeda has done it to itself, because it is being so ruthless, dogmatic, and murderous, that all the people are saying this is clearly the wrong way to go and this distorts (the image of) Islam,” he added.
Iraqi parliament is set to vote tomorrow on the security pact with the United States to possibly pave the way for US troops to leave by end of 2011.
“As the US moves out, there is some fear the security level may be in jeopardy, but I think the Iraqi security forces will be ready to maintain appropriate security,” said Dailey, who concluded by noting that the situation in Iraq is “a success story” since the pact “allows the Iraqis to take full responsibility.”