Thursday, April 12, 2007 at 13:11
Alarm in Spain over al-Qaeda call for its "reconquest"
By Sinikka Tarvainen
Madrid (dpa) - The emergence of a new al-Qaeda-linked organization in Northern Africa is alarming Spain, which is concerned about Islamists' calls for the reconquest of the country they regard as a lost part of the Muslim world. "We will not be in peace until we set our foot again in our beloved al-Andalus," al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb said on claiming responsibility for an attack which killed at least 24 people in Algiers on Wednesday.
Al-Andalus is the Moorish name for Spain, parts of which were ruled by Muslims for about eight centuries until the last Moorish bastion, Granada, succumbed to the Christian Reconquest in 1492.
The terrorists will undoubtedly attempt to extend their offensive from Northern Africa to European soil, anti-terrorism judge Baltasar Garzon warned, cautioning that Spain was at a "very high risk" of suffering an Islamist attack.
The reference to al-Andalus was not the first by al-Qaeda, which has also vowed to put an end to the Spanish "occupation" of the enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla on the Moroccan coast.
Such announcements worry the security services in Spain, where 29 mainly Moroccan suspects are on trial for the 2004 Madrid train bombings that killed 191 and injured about 1,800 people.
Ohhhh! That's why there's all the hub-bub. That train bombing was punishment for Spain's part in the Iraq War; but the Spaniards weren't supposed to actually go after the perpetrators! I get it! If Spain would just have taken its lumps, just turned the other cheek like a good Christian nation, nobody else would get hurt! Nobody's country would be overrun by islamo-fascists!