The Nine Deaths Of Al Qaeda No. 3

Joyner's take on the news that Mustafa Abu al-Yazid has been killed:

There was a point some years back when it was a running dark joke thatal Qaeda must have a lot of “number 3″ officials, as so many have beenkilled.  But it’s worth noting thatit has now been quite some time since the organization launched amajor, successful attack.   While the group seems to have no difficultyreplacing its foot soldiers, there may be limits to the number ofcompetent planners it can produce, especially when under constantsurveillance and assault from U.S. military and intelligence forces.And, yes, this marks the upside of the controversial drone strikesthat many of us deride as doing more harm than good because of thepropensity for killing non-combatants.

Increasingly, I feel the drone attacks may be our strongest technique against the enemy. As long as civilian casualties are kept as low as humanly possible. They are certainly more promising than an endless counter-insurgency in defense of a corrupt government.