Left: Still from al-Qaeda training video
(Baghdad) Iraqi elements of Al-Qaeda said today that the group will carry out "major attacks" soon, declaring that it remains powerful after the death of leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.
The online statement said that the terror network is preparing "major attacks that will shake the enemy like an earthquake and rattle them out of sleep," and was posted on an Islamic militantforum where the group has previously posted similar statements.
In addition to terror threats the post discounted the effects that last week's air strike had on the group.
"The organization has strengthened its back, regained its footing and has been renewed with fresh blood," read the statement. "For those who were waging holy war for the sake of al-Zarqawi, al-Zarqawi is dead. But for those who were fighting for the sake of God, God is alive and eternal."
The authenticity of the statement has not been independently verified, but US sources close to the Pentagon said that "there is no reason to suspect this is not genuine."
General George Casey told FOX News he expected the al-Qaeda statement because "they're hurt badly."
"It's expected but I think we'll be prepared for it," said Casey. "But again, you can't stop terrorist attacks completely."