Put aside for a moment the fact that these two individuals are murderous terrorists bent on the destruction of Western civilization.
Think of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi as the head of a small operation, in Iraq as it happens, that a few months ago merged into a larger organization, al-Qaida, whose corporate headquarters is somewhere in the vastness of the Afghan-Pakistani border.
As per orders from HQ, al-Zarqawi has been busy with bombings, kidnappings and beheadings but, because of a bad business plan or inept subordinates or both, things have not been going well.
The tactic of killing them by the scores has failed to win the hearts and minds of the Iraqis. Rather than rallying the locals to the cause of killing infidels, a car bombing that killed 125 provoked a demonstration in which Iraqis chanted "No to terrorism" and "No to Wahhabism," terrorism and Wahhabist fundamentalism being al-Qaida's bedrock principles.
Meanwhile, al-Zarqawi is constantly on the run, his organization is being ground down, and U.S. and Iraqi forces keep getting closer. He's had at least two close calls already this year, and his top aide and driver are in custody. The United States recently upped the reward for his capture to $25 million — the same price that's on the head of his CEO, Osama bin Laden.
So imagine how al-Zarqawi must have felt when bin Laden recently sent him a missive, intercepted by U.S. intelligence, that said in essence, "You're doing a great job and all that but you've really got to start killing Americans outside of Iraq and especially in the U.S. homeland."
It's a classic case of a remote headquarters hopelessly out of touch with the underlings actually trying to move product. You can imagine al-Zarqawi sitting in his hovel, U.S. helicopters clattering overhead, and saying to himself, "If it weren't for all the years I've got invested in this outfit, I'd tell that crazy S.O.B. to take this job and shove it."