Cover Story Overview

The Mysterious Relationship Between Al-Qa`ida and Iran

The relationship between al-Qa`ida and Iran is shrouded in mystery. The hints of occasional operational cooperation between al-Qa`ida and Iran are outweighed by the considerable and public evidence of the deep animosity between Sunni extremist al-Qa`ida and Shi`a extremist Iran. This dynamic may change, however, if the United States and Iran move toward confrontation or even conflict over the Iranian government’s nuclear weapons ambitions. This article reviews the historical relationship between al-Qa`ida and Iran before examining the factors that could cause the two entities to work together against the United States and its allies.

Stay Informed

Sign up to receive updates from CTC.

Sign up