Charles "Chuckles" Johnson, senior political expert and veteran neo-journalist writes:
Got a Big Al Qaeda Fish in Iraq
Thu, May 8, 2008 at 2:49:49 pm PST
Not completely confirmed but looking good: Leader of Al Qaeda in Iraq Arrested in Mosul.
BAGHDAD — The leader of Al Qaeda in Iraq, Abu Ayyub al-Masri, was arrested in the northern city of Mosul, the Iraqi Defense Ministry spokesman said Thursday.
Spokesman Mohammed al-Askari said the arrest of al-Masri, also known as Abu Hamza al-Muhajir, was confirmed to him by the Iraqi commander of the province. There was no immediate confirmation or comment from U.S. forces on the arrest.
The U.S. military in Baghdad said “we are currently checking with Iraqi authorities to confirm the accuracy of this information.”
Interior Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Abdul-Karim Khalaf said that Mosul police “arrested one of Al Qaeda’s leaders at midnight and during the primary investigations he admitted that he is Abu Hamza Al-Muhajir.”
Source: Fox News. If you read the full article however you'd notice that even it is too skeptical of the information provided to be taken as the Gospel.
Shortly afterwards on BBC news:
Iraq al-Qaeda chief not captured
The United States military in Iraq says a man detained in the northern city of Mosul is not in fact the leader of al-Qaeda in Iraq.
An earlier statement from the Iraqi defence ministry said that al-Masri had been captured.
But an American military spokeswoman, Peggy Kageleiry, said Abu Ayyub al-Masri had not been arrested.
She said confusion had arisen because a man with a similar name to the al-Qaeda in Iraq leader had been detained.
Al-Qaeda in Iraq has been blamed for or has claimed responsibility for some of the bloodiest insurgent attacks in Iraq since the US-led invasion in 2003.
Members of al-Qaeda are believed to have regrouped in the northern city since the beginning of the US troops "surge" last year.
Al-Masri is believed to have helped Abu Musab al-Zarqawi form the first al-Qaeda cell in Baghdad. Zarqawi was killed in June 2006.In April 2007, he was named "minister of war" in the 10-man cabinet of the Islamic State of Iraq, an umbrella organisation of Sunni militant groups.
Whoops.. Any bets up to when or whether he'll post an update?
//UPDATE: The lizard king has posted an update on the matter (http://littlegreenfootballs.com/article/29886_False_Alarm-_Not_Al-Masri). It's possible that he owes it to LGF Watch for pointing it out long in advance.. *waves*.. But then again, maybe not, so we'll never know..