In an audiocassette posted February 14 on Islamist websites, Abu Omar Al-Baghdadi, Emir of the Islamic State of Iraq, which is affiliated with Al-Qaeda, offers his views on "winning the struggle against the Jews."
In the cassette, Al-Baghdadi said, "Israel is a malignant germ in the body of the [Islamic] ummah that must be removed," and added that the obligation to liberate Al-Aqsa Mosque applied to all Muslims.
Al-Baghdadi accused Hamas of treason for entering the political process, and said that it had abandoned jihad fighters worldwide. He called on the Palestinians to adopt the path of jihad without distinguishing between Jews and infidels, and Palestinians who betray Islam; to establish a Salafi organization "that will educate the Children of the Stones for the supreme goals of jihad"; and to destroy the Shi'a that had begun to spread in Palestine in the guise of "resistance."
Al-Baghdadi further called on all Muslims to open new jihad fronts in order to ease the Jewish and U.S. pressure on the Palestinians and to strengthen the existing jihad fronts, particularly in Iraq and Afghanistan.
He also offered help to the Palestinians in the form of funds and training, including in preparing bombs and manufacturing rockets.