Secret Order Lets U.S. Raid Al-Qaeda in Many Countries

[New York Times] Eric Schmitt and Mark Mazzetti - The U.S. military since 2004 has used broad, secret authority to carry out nearly a dozen previously undisclosed attacks against al-Qaeda and other militants in Syria, Pakistan and elsewhere, according to senior American officials. A 2004 order signed by Defense Secretary Rumsfeld with the approval of President Bush identifies 15 to 20 countries, including Syria, Pakistan, Yemen, Saudi Arabia and several other Persian Gulf states, where Qaeda militants were believed to be operating or to have sought sanctuary, a senior administration official said. The recent raid into Syria was not the first time that Special Operations forces had operated in that country, according to a senior military official. Since the Iraq war began, Special Operations forces have several times made cross-border raids aimed at militants and infrastructure aiding the flow of foreign fighters into Iraq.

2008-11-10 01:00:00

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