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  • Author: Rolf Mowatt-Larssen
  • Publication Date: 11-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard University
  • Abstract: When legendary jihadist Abdullah Azzam was assassinated under mysterious circumstances in November 1989, suspects in his murder included Osama bin Laden and Egyptian Islamic Jihad (EIJ) leader Ayman al-Zawahiri. After the Soviets were expelled from Afghanistan, Azzam sought to shift jihad to his homeland, Palestine. Zawahiri sought to focus the jihad on Egypt and the other secular Muslim states, in hopes of restoring the caliphate, the rule of Islamic clerics, which had ended after the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire in 1924. After Islamic rule had been re-established in the Islamic world, Zawahiri wrote, “then history would make a new turn, God willing, in the opposite direction against the empire of the United States and the world's Jewish government.”
  • Topic: Islam, Nuclear Weapons, Terrorism, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Armed Struggle, Counterinsurgency
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Palestine, Egypt, Assam