Aiman-al-Zawahri who has been serving as Al-Qaida's number two has formally taken over the charge as the supreme leader of Al-Qaida. This announcement came on Thursday, June 16, 2011, through a website Al-Qaida has been using. Aiman-al-Zawahri belongs to an upper class Cairo family and is believed to have training as doctor and surgeon. Contradicting to Osama, he is believed to lack the charismatic qualities of a leader but his importance in Al-Qaida can be judged from the fact that he is on very top in the American's most wanted list, with a reward of $25 million to any information that may result into his capture or conviction. Further, he was also believed to be chosen as deputy by Osama himself.
Aiman-al-Zawahri would be facing major problems while leading Al-Qaida at a time when it is severely suffering from lack of leadership and unity of command. The organization's central command is thought to have no considerable control over the different factions operating in different parts of world. But it is still a matter of great concern that Al-Qaida exists in the form of an organization and is able to generate cadre and leadership albeit not of the earlier caliber. Aiman-al-Zawahri may not make Al-Qaida gain the strength it used to have, but if the process of Al-Qaidaism persists with same pace, some day any other Osama or Al-Zawahri may succeed in doing so.
Institutionalization of terrorism and the multiplication of terrorist networks are phenomena that have their roots in the complicated soil of social and political grounds. These grounds have to be understood properly if the world is really serious in uprooting these phenomena. Calling these phenomena as the root cause of terrorism does not mean that the ones who opt to be their part are determined to do so and are not responsible for their deeds. They are responsible for all their evil deeds and must be punished for them because they always had the option to be or not to be a part. However, the long lasting solution for uprooting these phenomena always lie in long term policies that can address the root causes and eliminate them and that is not just the duty of a single nation. All the nations of the world have to understand that if they are on the side of terror and are nourishing them, some day they have to be influenced by them severely, and we do not need to go far away in search of an example to the said statement.