Al Qaeda Number 2?

The latest number two seems to be Ayman al-Zawahiri. Is there a complete list of all previous Al qaeda number twos? And who is number one? Is it Osama or somebody else?

Ayman al-Zawahiri has been the number two for as long as I can remember. He was there in the early days of Al Qaeda, and has always been described as the number two in the media.

…Except when some other guy was captured or killed, and they wanted to report that we got Al Qaeda’s number two man.

Am I the only one who read this and felt like they were in an episode of The Prisoner?

Do you have a cite for that? I believe al-Zawahiri has consistently been depicted as bin Laden’s second-in-command. Words like “lieutenant” have been thrown around a lot, and I’ve seen number three applied to several people, including Abu Hamza Rabia and Abu Faraj al-Libbi.

Isn’t it unclear what the actual structure of al-Qaeda is? I thought it was quite nebulous and far from being totally centralized, as a “lieutenant” would imply.

Remember the difference between Al Qaeda and Al Qaeda in Iraq. They are not identical organizations. The #2s that keep getting bumped off or captured are in the latter, not the former ( except in the loosest of senses ).