After the Soviets withdrew from Afghanistan, Osama bin Laden returned to his native Saudi Arabia. He founded an organisation to help veterans of the Afghan war, many of whom went on to fight elsewhere and comprise the basis of Al-Qaeda..

AFTER THE terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, al-Qaeda surpassed the IRA, Hamas, and Hezbollah as the world’s most infamous terrorist organization. Al-Qaeda— ‘the base’ in Arabic—is the network of extremists organized by Osama bin Laden.