There is something fishy about the fact that the US government unclassified good intelligence attesting to the connection between Al Qaeda and Iraq back in 2007 but made the rest of us wait for it forever -- or until Wikileaks came along to release the information in 2011. Luckily, Thomas Joscelyn at the Weekly Standard noticed as it went by. His report opens:
A former Guantanamo detainee “was identified as an Iraqi intelligence officer who relocated to Afghanistan (AF) in 1998 where he served as a senior Taliban Intelligence Directorate officer in Mazar-E-Sharif,” according to a recently leaked assessment written by American intelligence analysts. The former detainee, an Iraqi named Jawad Jabber Sadkhan, “admittedly forged official documents and reportedly provided liaison between the governments of Afghanistan and Iraq.”
Sadkhan’s al Qaeda ties reached all the way to Osama bin Laden, according to the intelligence assessment. He reportedly received money from Osama bin Laden both before and after the September 11 attacks.
Identification by senior al Qaeda member
In Afghanistan, Sadkhan served under another Iraqi al Qaeda member: Abdul Hadi al Iraqi. According to the Gitmo analysts’ assessment, al Iraqi “identified [Sadkhan] in a letter as an Iraqi intelligence officer who relocated to Afghanistan where he was associated with Taliban and al-Qaida leadership.”
Abdul Hadi al Iraqi’s identification of Sadkhan is especially important. Al Iraqi was a major in Saddam Hussein’s military before relocating to Afghanistan, where he became one of Osama bin Laden’s top lieutenants in the 1990s. Al Iraqi led al Qaeda’s elite Arab 055 Brigade, which fought alongside the Taliban in Afghanistan.
In addition to being a top al Qaeda and Taliban military commander, al Iraqi was also involved in al Qaeda’s international operations. For example, al Iraqi met with two of the July 7, 2005 London bombers in northern Pakistan. Although the two had volunteered to fight against coalition forces in Afghanistan or Iraq, al Iraqi recognized their potential for committing attacks in the West and repurposed them for the 7/7 operation.
Thus, Sadkhan’s relationship with al Iraqi deserves closer scrutiny. ...
After the endless grief the Bush administration took for suggesting links between Iraq and al Qaeda, why in the world wouldn't they have have wanted to trumpet any and all evidence about that relationship?