A new terrorist leader, Shakir al-Abssi, has emerged to pick up where Al Qaeda left off, assembling small teams to strike at Americans from his base in Lebanon. His militant Islamic group, called Fatah al Islam, boasts 150 members who operate freely because Lebanese officials claim they have no authority to enter the Palestinian refugee camp where they train.
Abssi, who at 51 has a long and violent pedigree, received a death sentence in absentia for the 2002 assassination of an American diplomat in Jordan. Fatah, he said, will follow Osama bin Laden's dictums—if Abssi believes they cleave to Islamic law. "The only way to achieve our rights is by force."