The Guardian newspaper reports that al Qaeda is aggressively wooing the Sunni fighters who joined forces with America in 2006 during the surge. The Awakening Council, or Sons of Iraq, helped turn the tide of the war. And as part of the U.S. drawdown in Iraq, responsibility for the Awakening Council was handed over to the Iraqi government. Since then, the government has reportedly alienated many Awakening Council members by failing to pay salaries and failing to protect Awakening leaders who have been targeted for assassination. Now, with the end of U.S. combat operations, al Qaeda is taking advantage of the transition to reach out to Awakening members—using both threats and financial enticements to get them to rejoin the insurgency.
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