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October 29, 2004
Osama Weighs In

Just in time for the election's final stretch, Al Jazeera aired a new Osama bin Laden videotaped statement warning Americans that we will face more "Manhattans" unless we abandon Israel and bug out of Southwest Asia:

Osama bin Laden, addressing the American public four days ahead of presidential elections, said in a video aired Friday that the United States can avoid another Sept. 11 attack if it stops threatening the security of Muslims.

Reading a statement, the al Qaeda leader refrained from threats of new attacks and instead appealed to Americans.

"Your security is not in the hands of Kerry, Bush or al Qaeda. Your security is in your own hands," bin Laden said, referring to the president and his Democratic opponent. "Each state that does not mess with our security, has naturally guaranteed its own security."

Admitting for the first time that he ordered the Sept. 11 attacks, bin Laden said he did so because of injustices against the Lebanese and Palestinians by Israel and the United States.

If nothing else, the tape demonstrates that Osama was alive at least this spring, when Kerry became the presumptive Democratic nominee. It also should put to rest all of the idiotic conspiracy theories about 9/11 being a Zionist/CIA/Freemason Reichstag fire; OBL admitted that AQ planned and carried out the attacks. Now, perhaps, Islamic nations will rethink their complicity in allowing radicalism like al-Qaeda to flourish rather than spread stupid rumors about the Jews.

Osama has been watching some American entertainment during his long hiatus from the spotlight. He did his best Michael Moore impression during his statement:

Bin Laden suggested Bush was slow to react to the Sept. 11 attacks, giving the hijackers more time than they expected. At the time of the attacks, the president was listening to schoolchildren in Florida reading a book.

"It never occurred to us that the commander-in-chief of the American armed forces would leave 50,000 of his citizens in the two towers to face these horrors alone," he said, referring to the number of people who worked at the World Trade Center.

"It appeared to him (Bush) that a little girl's talk about her goat and its butting was more important than the planes and their butting of the skyscrapers. That gave us three times the required time to carry out the operations, thank God," he said.

I hope that Michael Moore appreciates his new fan.

This portends something unpleasant. That makes two videotaped "warnings" to the US, which may signal some action upcoming in the immediate future. Al-Jazeera only played one minute of the video statement, probably to minimize the possibility of inadvertently broadcasting any coded messages to remote cells. Since Madrid, we've expected to see some action from AQ to rattle us or affect the election, and it may be that the tapes are all they have -- but of course, we don't know that.

As for the effect the tape will have on the election, I think it will be negligible. It reminds people that OBL is still alive, which hurts Bush; on the other hand, it reminds people that we're at war and very much at risk, which hurts Kerry, who wants to minimize that focus as he trails Bush badly on the issue of terrorism. Partisans will play it both ways, while undecideds probably will resist allowing OBL to exercise influence on their vote.

For my part, I think we need to fight those who would use violence to intimidate us and dictate our foreign policy. That means we need to continue our forward strategy of engaging terrorists where they operate rather than wait for them to come here. OBL advertisements for Michael Moore movies won't change my mind or shake my resolve.

Sphere It Digg! View blog reactions
Posted by Ed Morrissey at October 29, 2004 4:49 PM

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