Al-Zarqawi coverage an example of buried ‘blowback’


When is America going to know what much of the world already knows:
In the 1980s, in Afghanistan, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi was a CIA-supported Mujahideen “freedom fighter”–an ugly, embarrassing fact that none of the mainstream commercial and public media I’ve monitored has reported. The Washington Post‘s June 9 “Biography” briefly cited his Afghan adventure but omitted the CIA linkage; likewise an NPR report. But that’s as far as American media have gone; the others have totally evaded Afghanistan.

However, on the Internet I easily found this: “Zarqawi went to Afghanistan to fight the Soviets in the late 1980s, which has been the ruin of many a poor boy. In Afghanistan he plugged into the al Qaeda terrorist network, at the time fighting the Soviet Union with the support of the CIA (Web link). In Afghanistan and Pakistan, Qaeda ran training camps where angry young men met other angry young men and formed lifelong friendships.

“One of the people Zarqawi is known to have met in the training camps
was a young Pakistani explosives expert named Abdel Basit, who would
later be known to the world as Ramzi Yousef. Other major terrorists were working in the camps at that time, including Khalid Shaikh Mohammed and the big cheese Osama bin Laden, who was more or less running the operation.”

In short, Zarqawi is another disastrous example of CIA “blowback,” where
secretly recruited, trained and directed “freedom fighters” morph into
anti-Western mass murderers. Early in his career, Saddam Hussein also
served Uncle Sam as a CIA anti-Soviet terrorist. But Bush and Co. and our
mainstream media don’t reveal any of that.

Richard Lee Dechert is a longtime activist and expert on U.S. intelligence operations and media reform issues.