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New al Qaeda video praises slain Yemeni-American cleric

By the CNN Wire Staff
updated 4:40 PM EST, Tue December 20, 2011
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Anwar al-Awlaki was killed in a U.S. drone strike in September
  • The video is an eulogy that praises him for his role in the holy war
  • It urges students in the West to seek revenge for his death

(CNN) -- Al Qaeda posted a video on jihadist forums Tuesday focusing on Yemeni-American cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, who was killed in a U.S. drone strike in September.

The video features a eulogy for al-Awlaki by Ibrahim al-Rubeish, a leader in al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, or AQAP, and a former Guantanamo detainee.

In the video, al-Rubeish praises al-Awlaki, the face of AQAP, for his character and contributions to holy war and urges Muslims, especially students in Western nations, to seek revenge for his death, according to the SITE Intelligence Group, which monitors terrorist websites.

Also in the video, an English-speaking fighter identified as Abu Yazid criticizes the United States for killing one of its own citizens in Yemen.

Al-Awlaki was killed by a U.S. drone strike in Yemen on September 30 along with another American named Samir Khan, the co-editor of the al Qaeda's English-language online propaganda and recruiting magazine, Inspire.

The United States regarded al-Awlaki as a terrorist who posed a threat to American homeland security. Western intelligence officials believed al-Awlaki was a senior leader of AQAP, one of the world's most active al Qaeda affiliates.

U.S. officials say al-Awlaki recruited Umar Farouk AbdulMutallab, the Nigerian man known as the underwear bomber, who was charged with trying to blow up a trans-Atlantic flight as it landed in Detroit on December 25, 2009.

The militant cleric is also said to have exchanged e-mails with Maj. Nidal Hasan, who is accused of killing a dozen fellow soldiers at Fort Hood in Texas.

The video praises al-Awlaki for his fight against America.

"As a result, the mujaheed brother Nidal Hasan ... executed a heroic slaughter in Fort Hood military base, killing those soldiers who were preparing to go to Iraq," al-Rubeish says.

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