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“How could this happen in a country we helped liberate?” Secretary of State Hillary Clinton pondered in the aftermath of the September 11, 2012 attacks in Benghazi that left American ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens and three other Americans dead. The Jihadist Plot: The Untold Story of Al-Qaeda and the Libyan Rebellion shows how it could have happened and why it did happen. It happened because in supporting the Libyan rebellion against Muammar al-Qaddafi, America and its allies, in effect, changed sides in the war on terror, securing the victory of some of the very Islamic extremist forces that they had been fighting for the previous decade.

The result is a Libya that is today under the sway of heavily-armed jihadist brigades that make no secret of their allegiance to al-Qaeda, proudly flying the al-Qaeda flag in broad daylight in Benghazi and other Libyan cities. Moreover, as the September 11 Benghazi attacks make clear, if America reversed course in Libya in order to join forces with jihadists, the jihadists remain exactly as they ever were, with the same ideology and the same hatred of America.

Exploding the myth of NATO’s “humanitarian intervention,” The Jihadist Plot tells the real story of the Libyan rebellion. It traces the itineraries of some of the notorious veterans of international jihad who served as the rebellion’s leading commanders and strategists and shows how NATO helped to create a new jihadist hero at the siege of Sirte. And it reveals that long before the onset of the so-called Arab Spring, Libya’s own al-Qaeda affiliate, the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, had devised a plan to bring down the Qaddafi regime using some of the classic methods of jihadist terror: a plan that would be put into practice in the rebellion of February 2011.

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