Video: U.S.: Video shows terrorist attacks

By Lisa Myers Senior investigative correspondent
NBC News
updated 2/20/2004 7:45:16 PM ET 2004-02-21T00:45:16

On Feb. 1, two suicide bombers simultaneously destroyed two Kurdish party headquarters in Irbil, Iraq. More than 100 people were killed.

On Nov. 20, a truck bomb in Kirkuk killed five.

On Sept. 9, there was another deadly suicide car bombing in Irbil — this time at U.S. intelligence headquarters.

All the violence is claimed to be the work of a new terror group named Ansar al Sunnah, which U.S. intelligence believes is trying to unite all Islamic militants in Iraq.

A tape now circulating on the Internet attempts to put the group on the map — showing terrorists preparing for suicide missions. “We will hit the American forces!” one militant proclaimed through a translator.

U.S. military deaths in IraqAccording to terrorism expert Ben Venzke of Intelcenter, “This is the first time we’ve seen them actually put a face on the current series of attacks that are occurring in Iraq.”

Based on their dialect, most of the terrorist fighters appear to come from outside Iraq.  At least two are seemingly from Saudi Arabia.

Their goal?  One translator’s voice on the tape says, “The goal is not only to get rid of the occupiers of Iraq, but to establish an Islamic state.”

One sequence displays the identity cards of Spaniards and Canadians whom the group claims to have killed, including Spanish intelligence officers ambushed on a highway near Baghdad.

A key purpose of the video is for propaganda — to attract recruits and raise money.

“The tape shows a more sophisticated organization that is thinking well beyond the roadside bombings of tomorrow,” Venzke added.

Senior U.S. officials say this group is a threat and its claims are credible. They say the group’s propaganda has actually helped U.S. forces figure out who’s doing what and who’s to blame for much of the violence.

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