PJ Crowley: Al-Qaeda losing the fight and the argument
(P.J. Crowley is a former Assistant US Secretary of State under the Obama administration.)
Last year, the state department's Center for Strategic Counterterrorism Communications released a brief video on YouTube with clips of exuberant young people participating in popular demonstrations in the Middle East.
Interspersed with these dramatic scenes was the now iconic photo of the late Osama Bin Laden watching television from his "man cave" in Pakistan, still a significant global figure but increasingly a spectator forced to react to agendas set in other places by other players.
A year after Bin Laden's demise, core al-Qaeda is struggling to survive as a coherent structure. As US Defence Secretary Leon Panetta said last summer: "We're within reach of strategically defeating al-Qaeda."
Its leadership continues to be attacked and eliminated.