Now that some of the people involved in the possible relationship have been caught and interrogated, and the region has been secured and analyzed, the story should be reevaluated.
What allegations of support can be better confirmed or denied 3 years after the start of the U.S. led invasion?
- Abu Iman al-Baghdadi, 20 year veteran of Iraqi Intelligence, told BBC news that Saddam Hussein is funding and arming Ansar al Islam to fend off anti-Saddam Kurds
Jim Muir, BBC, July 24, 2002
-Qassem Hussein Mohamed, 20-years of service in Iraq’s Mukhabarat, says that Saddam Hussein has been secretly aiding, arming and funding Ansar al Islam and al Qaeda for several years Scott Peterson, Christian Science Monitor, 4-2-02
Jeffrey Goldberg, New Yorker, 3-25-02
- The NSA was said to have intercepted phone calls of Iraqi officials praising Ansar al Islam and talked of funding the group Stephen Hayes, Weekly Standard, 7-22-05
- Abdul Rahman al-Shamari, in interviews with Jonathan Schanzer of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy and others, has said that high ranking Iraqi officers were in league with Ansar al-Islam/al Qaeda affiliates well before the start of the war Jonathan Schanzer, Weekly Standard, 3-01-04
- Local Kurds later reported similar stories Preston Mendenhall, MSNBC, "War Diary"
- A number of high ranking former Mukhabart agents and Military officers have been caught working with Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and Ansar al-Islam in Iraq Mark Eichenlaub, NewsBlaze, 2006
- Captured Ansar al Islam members told reporters Michael Howard and Jonathan Schanzer that the head of Iraq's Mukhabarat was helping Iraqi officials smuggle military grade TNT and other weapons into the possession of Ansar al Islam. Michael Howard, Guardian Unlimited, 8-23-02 Jonathan Schanzer, The Washington Institute, 1-15-03
-TNT, which bore the trademarks of the Iraqi military, was later found among Ansar's possessions by Kurdish security forces. Micheal Howard, Guardian Unlimited, 8-23-02
- Captured Ansar members have told their captors that Izzat al-Douri, one of Saddam Hussein's top aides, is now leading Ansar attacks on coalition targets Globalsecurity.org, 10-03 Jack Fairweather, UK Telegraph, 10-31-03 AP, October 31,2003
- Landmines, chemical weapons gear and mortars were all found among the rubble of Ansar al Islam's destroyed camp in Northen Iraq Newsday, March 31,2003, just as captured Iraqi Intelligence officers and Ansar al Islam members had claimed BEFORE the war Jeffrey Goldberg, New Yorker, 3-25-02
- Atropine auto-injectors (antidote for chemical weapons), which had been mass ordered by Iraq in late 2002, and gas masks were found at both the Ansar base in Northern Iraq and official Iraqi military compounds CNN, 10-12-02 CNN, April 8, 2003
- A number of captured or surviving members of Ansar al Islam, including their Media Chief Mohamed Gharib, have told reporters that their group accepted financial and weapons assistance from Saddam Hussein's regime Scott Peterson, Christian Science Monitor, 10-16-2003
Enough human testimony, coupled with the discovery of numerous examples of physical evidence (weapons, mines, antidotes, etc), makes it possible to re-examine the question of whether or not the regime of Saddam Hussein sponsorsed Ansar al Islam. While the of extent of sponsorship remains an open question, there is an ample amount of evidence to conclude that mines, money, TNT, chemical weapons gear and other forms of logistical support took place. All of these things are clear violations of United Nations Security Council Resolution 687, barring Iraq from harboring or aiding known terrorist groups.Further information on Ansar al Islam is available at the Institute for Counter-Terrorism's section on Ansar al-Islam and Dan Darling's "Ansar al-Islam Dossier" published for the Center for Policing Terrorism.