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For those of you who don’t know, Omar Abdel-Rahman, aka “the blind sheik”, is serving a life sentence in a federal prison for his role in planning the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center. He is also viewed, unsurprisingly, as a religious leader in most of the Arab world.
Thomas Jocelyn of the Weekly Standard does a great job of connecting the dots and makes a compelling case that the sacking of US diplomatic facilities on September 11 was part of a larger effort to secure the release of Omar Abdel-Rahman.
Now we have reports that the Obama Administration is in negotiations with the government of Egypt to release the blind sheik from prison:
The U.S. State Department is currently in negotiations with the Egyptian government for the transfer of custody of Omar Abdel-Rahman, also known as “the Blind Sheikh,” for humanitarian and health reasons, a source close to the the Obama administration told TheBlaze…
The negotiations are allegedly part of the ongoing discussions with the Egyptian government to resolve the crisis plaguing the Middle East, the source told TheBlaze. Calls to the State Department for comment referred us to the Department of Justice, and nothing has been confirmed.
The same story has also appeared in the Arab media. According to Al-Arabiya, as translated by Jihadwatch,
The Egyptian government has started real action to respond to a U.S. offer offering to release 50 Egyptians in American prisons, including Sheikh Omar Abdel Rahman, in return for the release of 19 Americans accused of foreign funding of nongovernmental organizations, as confirmed by Major General Mohamed Hani Zaher, an expert on military research and the fight against international terrorism.
Zaher told the newspaper that the Egyptians need to exploit the weak U.S. position, especially after the conviction of their nationals on charges affecting Egypt’s sovereignty over its territory, and not to allow this deal to take place without the agreement of the U.S. administration to release more than 500 Egyptian prisoners in U.S. custody; the Egyptian Foreign Ministry does not know anything about them.
What we’re seeing here is the jihadist movement achieving psychological ascendancy over the Obama Administration. They have been out maneuvered at every turn and are now doing what weak players always do: they try to bargain their way out of their predicament. This administration is as effectively laying the groundwork for the next 9/11 as the Clinton Administration did for the last.