AQAP Statement (Updated)

I've been away from the internet for most of the weekend, but I returned today to find that al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula has posted a statement taking responsibility for the assassination attempt on Muhammad bin Nayif. (Thanks to all the readers who e-mailed me links.)

Thomas Hegghammer over at Jihadica has a couple of excellent posts on the statement as well as some background about Muhammad, why I'm not seeing Thomas quoted in some of the stories on this attack is beyond me. Come on reporters, you guys can do better than this.

I did see this interesting explanation in an AFP report for SITE's early call on the statement:

"In a statement posted on an Islamist website late on Thursday, Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) said it was behind the attack, according to US-based SITE Intelligence monitoring group.

But AQAP, which said in the statement that Prince Mohammed was killed in the attack, did not provide further details at the time, and withdrew the statement later in the day, SITE said."

I don't know much about SITE so I will (largely) refrain from commenting, but I got a call on Thursday fairly soon after the attempt took place and I was on the forums most of the evening and late into the night and I didn't see any statement, so I'm curious as to what SITE believed they saw. Strange.

As for the attacker himself, 'Abdullah al-'Asiri, he was on Saudi's list of 85 published early this year (#40 on this list). The statement is fairly short, but packed with interesting details. Like Thomas, I am interested to hear more about the "networks of spies" uncovered by AQAP.

To me, this attack is, like I have been saying recently, an attempt by AQAP to square its actions with its rhetoric and to demonstrate that it has the regional reach it claims to have.

Update: I mistakenly added the definite article to 'Asiri - my mistake.

The 4 types of thinking talents: Analytic, procedural, relational and innovative

Understanding thinking talents in yourself and others can build strong teams and help avoid burnout.

Big Think Edge
  • Learn to collaborate within a team and identify "thinking talent" surpluses – and shortages.
  • Angie McArthur teaches intelligent collaboration for Big Think Edge.
  • Subscribe to Big Think Edge before we launch on March 30 to get 20% off monthly and annual memberships.
Keep reading Show less

Do you have a self-actualized personality? Maslow revisited

Rediscovering the principles of self-actualisation might be just the tonic that the modern world is crying out for.

Personal Growth

Abraham Maslow was the 20th-century American psychologist best-known for explaining motivation through his hierarchy of needs, which he represented in a pyramid. At the base, our physiological needs include food, water, warmth and rest.

Keep reading Show less

Scientists reactivate cells from 28,000-year-old woolly mammoth

"I was so moved when I saw the cells stir," said 90-year-old study co-author Akira Iritani. "I'd been hoping for this for 20 years."

Yamagata et al.
Surprising Science
  • The team managed to stimulate nucleus-like structures to perform some biological processes, but not cell division.
  • Unless better technology and DNA samples emerge in the future, it's unlikely that scientists will be able to clone a woolly mammoth.
  • Still, studying the DNA of woolly mammoths provides valuable insights into the genetic adaptations that allowed them to survive in unique environments.
Keep reading Show less

Believe in soulmates? You're more likely to 'ghost' romantic partners.

Does believing in true love make people act like jerks?

Thought Catalog via Unsplash
Sex & Relationships
  • Ghosting, or cutting off all contact suddenly with a romantic partner, is not nice.
  • Growth-oriented people (who think relationships are made, not born) do not appreciate it.
  • Destiny-oriented people (who believe in soulmates) are more likely to be okay with ghosting.
Keep reading Show less