Obama has come under severe criticism for ordering the drone killing of American citizen -- and alleged Al Qaeda operative -- Anwar al-Awlaki. A week after Awlaki's death, his 16 year-old son was killed in another drone operation. In a previous post
, I laid out my reasons for speculating that Awlaki was always "ours" -- that is, a deep cover American agent who had penetrated Al Qaeda. If this theory is correct, then the man's controversial death (and that of his son) may have been mere theatrics designed to cover his exit from Yemen.
For some reason, the following story (published in October of 2011) has escaped my attention until now: Report: No evidence al-Awlaki was killed in Yemen
Yemen's security agencies have no substantial evidence that al-Qaeda leader Anwar al-Awlaki was killed in a recent airstrike in the eastern province of Mareb, an official security source said Thursday.
'The latest information available to the security agencies is that al-Awlaki was driving in a motorcade of three cars when a US drone targeted them (on September 30),' the source told the Yemeni website Mareb Press on condition of anonymity.
He added that one car had been hit, while the other two escaped.
'There is no irrefutable information that al-Awlaki was inside the hit car,' he said.
According to the source, it was hard to identify the remains left after the raid.
'There was no actual body. All that was left after the incident were mere remains mixed with wrecked pieces of the targeted car,' he said. 'These remains were collected and buried by residents in the area.'
My theory is designed to make all parties unhappy. Right-wingers who reflexively hate all Muslims will not want to contemplate the idea that someone they've been taught to detest may have aided the United States. Left-wingers infuriated by the drone killing of an American citizen will not want to contemplate the idea that this attack was pure stagecraft designed to extricate an ally. Awlaki's family will not want to contemplate the possibility that he lied to them over the course of many years. Jihadists will not want to contemplate the idea that they trusted a spy.
If I have somehow managed to piss off everyone
on this occasion, I have done my duty.