Al Qaeda Affiliates increasingly independent

This New York Times article suggests that Al Qaeda ‘affiliates’ in the Middle East and Africa are now detaching themselves from core Al Qaeda leadership, a process accelerated by the May killing of former leader, Osama Bin Laden, and the recent  drone assassination of ‘number 2’ operative, Atiyah abd al-Rahman.

“For the past two years, the affiliates have been gaining in stature while core Al Qaeda has been declining,” said a senior American counterterrorism official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because intelligence assessments of Al Qaeda are classified. “Bin Laden’s death accelerated this trend, and Atiyah’s death is the icing on the cake.”

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