Al-Qaeda leader in Yemen mocks Trump after raid
Feb 09, 2017 08:53 PM EST
The al Qaeda leader in Yemen called Donald Trump "the new fool of the Whitehouse" in the recorded audio intended to condemn the raid on an al Qaeda compound in Yemen conducted by the United States. That was the first military combat death under Donald Trump administration.
In the 11-minute recording that was released a week after the raid, the al Qaeda leader Qassim al-Rimi said, "The new fool of the Whitehouse received a painful slap across his face." CNN reported that at least 23 civilians were killed in the attack. The number was acknowledged by Rimi when he gave 14 men and 11 women and children (may include 2 non-civilians) who were killed in the raid. But also claimed dozens of the NAVY seals were also killed and wounded. US said only one NAVY seal was killed
Different statements were given by a senior US military official and US Central Command and the Pentagon regarding the al Qaeda leader Qassim al-Rimi as the objective of the raid. The senior US military official said that Rimi was the target of the operation, while US Central Command, which oversees forces in the region and the Pentagon denied that Rimi was the objective of the raid. As has been said by Pentagon spokesman Jeff Davis on Tuesday, that there was never any intention, hope, anticipation or plan that Rimi would be part of the operation.
The death of 23 civilians includes the 8-year-old daughter of Anwar al-Awlaki, the person who once directed attacks against the United States but was killed in 2011. The al Qaeda leader mocked the said American operation as he said that when the Americans escaped, they dragged their killed and wounded, and they found no other alternative but to destroy their own planes so that it would not be proof of their scandal.
The senior US military official added that intelligence collection was not the only objective of the raid when it was done Rimi wasn't there, the US military believed it would find intelligence that would lead to him, he said. While the first report that al Qaeda leader Rimi was the target of the raid was given by NBC, it also confirmed that the 14 men killed in the raid were al Qaeda fighters.