Not just our voices

After “victory” has been declared in Iraq – shame about the ways in which the US and Iraqi authorities treat journalists – what do Islamist websites say about the conflict?

The invaluable Conflicts Forum regularly translates these sites and provides Western audience with an insight rarely given by our media:

The “Council Assembly of Mujahidin ” — the anti-American alliance in Iraq led by Al-Qaeda — declared on October 15, 2006, the establishment of an Islamic State of Iraq in the central and western regions of the country. There was little official reaction from international and regional governments — the only reaction came from President Bush when he said that the US will never allow such a project to be realized. But the facts on the ground are that the US can do little to stand in the way of the pursuit of such a project, and Al-Qaeda is not asking for permission.

The silence from regional governments towards such a declaration is not a sign of indifference. Commentators suggest that, on the contrary, this silence reflects a deep concern and worry about the Al-Qaeda project. [Source]

These commentators see an Islamic State of Iraq led by Al-Qaeda as more than a serious threat to the stability of countries like Jordan and Saudi Arabia, but as a threat to their existence. Al-Qaeda is viewed as waiting for the day when they will have access to any border with Israel, and it is well known that the Jordanian border is the longest and most strategic.

For Saudi Arabia, this new Islamic state is a threat because it will increase the influence of the pro-Al-Qaeda groups inside a country where the culture is already receptive to the influence of Al-Qaeda’s ideology.

For Israel, this might be a serious threat, not less than the Iranian atomic program but maybe more, since Israel understands that compromise and political negotiation may be possible with the Iranian government, but not with Al-Qaeda.

At least one Western independent website cares what Arabs are saying about their world.