The drone strike in Yemen this morning dealt a blow to al Qaeda’s propaganda efforts. Not only did it kill Anwar al-Awlaki, whose online lectures are believed to have prompted attacks, it also killed Samir Khan, who founded al Qaeda’s English-language magazine, Inspire. Like Awlaki, Khan was a U.S. citizen. Born in Saudi Arabia, he grew up in New York from the age of 7. In 2004 he moved to South Carolina, where he started posting pro–al Qaeda messages online. In 2009 he left the U.S. for Yemen, where he founded Inspire. The magazine published advice on tactics, bomb building, and other things. Khan is believed to have written, edited, and designed most of it. In the latest issue, Inspire criticized Iran for spreading 9/11 conspiracy theories instead of giving credit to al Qaeda.
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