Global Security Newswire
August 1, 2011

A top U.S. National Security Council official last week indicated the Obama administration is “doubling down” in using unmanned weapons against al-Qaeda, the Los Angeles Times reported (see GSN, July 29).

“I think there are three to five senior leaders that if they’re removed from the battlefield, would jeopardize al-Qaeda’s capacity to regenerate,” retired general Douglas Lute, NSC chief strategist for Afghanistan and Pakistan, said at the Aspen Security Forum in Colorado.

Lute would not specify which al-Qaeda leaders were being targeted other than Ayman al-Zawahiri, who heads the terror network’s central operation in the region following the May killing of Osama bin Laden.

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