Al Qaeda's No. 2 leader killed by drone strike, official says
Abu Yahya al-Libi appeared frequently in videos on the Internet, including one in 2006 by an al Qaeda-linked media group.
June 5th, 2012
01:27 PM ET

Al Qaeda's No. 2 leader killed by drone strike, official says

[Updated at 1:27 p.m. ET] Abu Yahya al-Libi, the second most senior leader of al Qaeda, has been killed by a U.S. drone strike in Pakistan, a U.S. official said Tuesday.

His death marks one of the most significant blows to al Qaeda since the U.S. military killed Osama bin Laden in a daring nighttime raid in Pakistan a year ago. Al-Libi was second-in-command behind al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri, who took the helm after bin Laden's death.

The drone fired at least six missiles at a militant compound near the town of Mir Ali in the North Waziristan region near the Afghanistan border. The attack left 15 militants dead and three others wounded, a U.S. official said earlier Tuesday.

Al Qaeda will have a hard time replacing al Libi, according to the U.S. official who said al Libi was dead. "There is no one who even comes close in terms of replacing the expertise (al Qaeda) has just lost," said the U.S. official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

[Initial post, 8:04 a.m. ET] Abu Yahya al-Libi, the No. 2 man in al Qaeda and a longtime public face of the terror network, has been targeted by a drone strike in Pakistan's tribal region, a U.S. official said Tuesday.

Investigators are trying to determine whether al-Libi was injured or killed in the Monday hit, which left 15 militants dead and three others wounded, the official said. Intelligence officials may find out al-Libi's fate only from monitoring websites and chatter, according to the official.

A senior Pakistani official said investigators have to verify that al-Libi was among the dead. Eight of the victims from the strike were "foreigners," with most of them Arabs, the Pakistani official said.

The drone fired at least six missiles at a militant compound near the town of Mir Ali in the North Waziristan region near the Afghanistan border.

It was the third such deadly attack in as many days and the 21st suspected U.S. drone strike in Pakistan this year in the fight against al Qaeda.

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Filed under: Al Qaeda • Pakistan
soundoff (35 Responses)
  1. Jarome

    I think they will have a closed casket funeral for this Pakistani al-Libi guy.

    June 5, 2012 at 9:20 am | Report abuse |

      Hopefully, there was a little tracer round they popped him with. Then the military could send in another drone during the funeral to get the rest of his goons.

      June 5, 2012 at 11:22 am | Report abuse |
  2. saywhat

    Scores of civilians including women and children were killed also in these strikes during the last few days. But that is irrelevant.
    What are a few score more when the tally runs into tens of thousands in the past 10 yrs.

    June 5, 2012 at 10:17 am | Report abuse |

      I am all for a little collateral damage if it gets the target.

      June 5, 2012 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
    • salinesolution

      In your lifetime there will never be a weapon that only kills bad guys. Innocent people are going to die no matter how careful we.

      June 5, 2012 at 2:37 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Pete

    There were hundreds of thousands of innocents killed,the result of collatral damage from missiles and incoming shellings on villages nationwide in Vietnam also.That's war,bombs,missiles and other explosives can't differentiate from innocent villagers and combatants,from miles away they all look the same and when hit,innocents can't rightly be identified because of the body being destroyed beyond recognision.That's war,and its problems resulting from it,not always being pleasant or just,no one is above the fray till its over,if it ever does..

    June 5, 2012 at 11:24 am | Report abuse |
    • George

      True dude. You are right about Vietnam - there were no muslims and no terrorists in Vietnam - that was sad. However, this is Pakistan - full of muslims - full of terrorists - full of Islamic jihadists. Cool. Drone some more. Nobody minds if you bomb Pakistan, you do not have to worry about innocents - there are none.

      June 5, 2012 at 7:28 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Portland tony

    I shot a drone in the air. Where it fell I do not know?

    June 5, 2012 at 11:31 am | Report abuse |
  5. saywhat

    @ Pete
    On the mark. That's why we love wars.And don't we?
    @ Pedo Bear
    A 'little' and 'collateral damage' explains it all. Thanks. But say when does 'little' end, what numbers shall we say?

    June 5, 2012 at 11:46 am | Report abuse |

      Who cares as long as we get hit our target! 🙂

      June 5, 2012 at 11:52 am | Report abuse |
  6. bobcat (in a hat)©,


    Who was the first person to look at a cow and say, "I think I'll squeeze these dangly things here, and drink whatever comes out"?

    Who was the first one who thought that the white thing that came from a hen's butt looked edible?

    Why do toasters always have a setting that burns the toast to a horrible crisp which no decent human being would eat?

    If Jimmy cracks corn and no one cares, why is there a song about him?

    If the professor on Gilligan's Island can make a radio out of coconut, why can't he fix a hole in a boat?

    Why do people point to their wrist when asking for the time, but don't point to their crotch when they ask where the bathroom is?

    Why does Goofy stand erect while Pluto remains on all fours? They're both dogs! And they think Goofy is the stupid one!!!

    If Wile E. Coyote had enough money to buy all that Acme crap, why didn't he just buy dinner?

    If quizzes are quizzical, what are tests?

    If corn oil is made from corn, and vegetable oil is made from vegetables, then what is baby oil made from?

    Is Disney World the only people trap operated by a mouse?

    Why do the Alphabet song and Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star have the same tune?

    Do illiterate people get the full effect of Alphabet Soup?

    Did you ever notice that when you blow in a dog's face, he gets mad at you, but when you take him on a car ride, he sticks his head out the window.

    Why is it that when someone tells you that there are over a billion stars in the universe, you believe them, but if they tell you there is wet paint somewhere, you have to touch it to make sure.

    June 5, 2012 at 11:48 am | Report abuse |

    Now you are stuck thinking about your blinks! 😛

    June 5, 2012 at 12:02 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Tom C

    What I don't understand is that if this guy was captured the O Admin would want him tried in a criminal court not a military court but if they find him walking the street they just blow him up.

    June 5, 2012 at 1:52 pm | Report abuse |
  9. High Hopes

    Say What:

    How about diplomacy? It hasn't worked – in fact, its made matters worse. War is what Assad has declared on his own people. Rarely does a day go by without his armies attacking cities and their citizens cry for help. Assad wants everyone to think he's fighting terrorists... but, Assad lies.

    Should a whole race of people fall in their own blood for one tyrants right to rule a people who are little more than slaves for him? How does a man serve two masters… one a king, the other his conscience? Take heart that when you seek out liberty, you don't find your family slaughtered, your home destroyed and an early grave.

    Trust me, war is not what they yearn for. There are times when safety is all one could ask for... this is one of those times.


    June 5, 2012 at 2:05 pm | Report abuse |
  10. saywhat

    Thanks @High Hopes
    I sure agree with your views on tyrants and such and our noble efforts in freeing people in those far off lands.
    And I do take heart when I don't 'find my family slaughtered and home destroyed' when I see tens of thousands of innocent civilians killed and being killed in Iraq , Afghanistan and Pakistan as a consequence of our noble efforts and no fault of theirs.
    But pray take a moment to realize that things are not that simple in places like Syria. You have to understand the dynamics at play in the region. Unlike Egypt where the population rose in a ground swell against our favorite dictator, in Syria its not just one tyrant against his people but outside forces vying for influene also. Those that see his regime as an
    obstacle to their designs.
    Take care friend.

    June 5, 2012 at 2:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • George

      @saywhat Pakistanis hide terrorists. Al-Libi was found and neutralized there. Drone them. People hiding terrorists are not innocent. They need to be wiped out too, otherwise they will nurture more terrorists.

      June 5, 2012 at 7:30 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Bill

    Looks like they hiring now. Get your resume in folks.

    June 5, 2012 at 2:16 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Abu Ashok Bin Gupta

    Now that we have taken care of Al Qaeda, let's focus on the genocide in Indian Occupied Kashmir by Indian Troops. Let's send the drones to rain on them.

    NEW YORK: Renowned Indian activist and novelist Arundhati Roy has decried the silence of the international community over the continued “brutal Indian occupation of Kashmir” and said Kashmiris should be given the right to self-determination……
    She said so little was known about the atrocities being committed by more than half a million Indian troops, the continuing repression and indignities let loose on Kashmiri men, women and children.
    More than 700,000 troops were concentrated in the tiny valley, with checkpoints at every nook and corner of Kashmiri towns and cities. The huge Indian presence, she added, was in sharp contrast with 160,000 US troops in Iraq.
    Ms Roy alleged that Indian army or security personnel were killing young children, adding that Kashmiris were not radical Islamists or jihadists as India portrayed them. She deplored the Indian government’s attempts to demonise Kashmiris who were moderate Muslims.

    June 5, 2012 at 2:30 pm | Report abuse |
  13. saywhat

    @ Abu Ashok
    yours is like a cry in the wilderness, I'm sad to say.
    Kashmir and the brutal indian military rule of decades are matters we in the US would rather not be bothered about. Like Palestine it doesn't serve our agenda.

    June 5, 2012 at 2:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Abu Ashok Bin Gupta

      May Lord Jesus forgive you my child. You will be bothered when they come after you. May Lord have mercy.

      New, More Dangerous Hindu Extremist Groups Emerge in India

      Christians concerned as rightwing factions splinter to form militant outfits.
      PUNE, India, October 29 (CDN) — After more than a decade of severe persecution, India’s Christian minority is growing increasingly concerned over the mushrooming of newer and deadlier Hindu extremist groups.

      Gone are the days when Christians had to watch out only for the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (World Hindu Council) and its youth wing, Bajrang Dal, which are closely linked with the most influential Hindu extremist umbrella organization, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). With voter support faltering for the RSS’s political wing, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), moderate and extremist sections within the Hindu nationalist movement are blaming each other, and militant splinter groups have emerged.

      Claiming to be breakaway factions of the RSS, new groups with even more extreme ideology are surfacing. The Abhinav Bharat (Pride of India), the Rashtriya Jagran Manch (National Revival Forum), the Sri Ram Sene (Army of god Rama), the Hindu Dharam Sena (Army for Hindu Religion) and the Sanatan Sanstha (Eternal Organization) have launched numerous violent attacks on Christian and Muslim minorities.

      June 5, 2012 at 2:49 pm | Report abuse |
  14. saywhat

    @ Pedo Bear
    Your love of imagining humans blown to pieces and limbs scattered around, death & devastation is just numbing, man.
    Have a good one all.

    June 5, 2012 at 2:46 pm | Report abuse |
  15. ify kins

    Thanks to the troop. The militants are reducing gradually.

    June 5, 2012 at 3:14 pm | Report abuse |
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