Friday, January 20, 2006Very interesting turn of events. I can only guess that this is because of the attack the other day. Obviously, this is the first time Bin Laden's appeared in a videotape in a good while and the fact that he's offering to rebuild Iraq and Afghanistan and end fighting in Muslim countries is a radically different ideological viewpoint than just last month when al-Zawahiri told Bush to admit defeat in Iraq. Part of me wonders just how much control he has over Al-Qaeda, and whether this is part of some internal struggle within the network.
BTW have we caught him yet? I know it's been a while but I can't help but think there was some sort of 'we will catch him' promise made at some point or other.
Bin Laden Warns of Attacks, Offers Truce
Jan 19 10:28 AM US/Eastern
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Al-Jazeera aired an audiotape purportedly from Osama bin Laden on Thursday, saying al-Qaida is making preparations for attacks in the United States but offering a truce to rebuild Iraq and Afghanistan.
The voice on the tape said heightened security measures in the United States are not the reason there have been no attacks there since the Sept. 11, 2001, suicide hijackings.
Instead, the reason is "because there are operations that need preparations, and you will see them," he said.
"Based on what I have said, it is better not to fight the Muslims on their land," he said. "We do not mind offering you a truce that is fair and long-term. ... So we can build Iraq and Afghanistan ... there is no shame in this solution because it prevents wasting of billions of dollars ... to merchants of war."
The speaker did not give conditions for a truce in the excerpts aired by the Arab broadcaster.