A new video distributed by al-Qaeda’s media arm to mark the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks includes previously unreleased warnings from Osama bin Laden, an audio message from successor Ayman al-Zawahiri and, naturally, a recommendation for a Bob Woodward book.
The video of bin Laden appears to be the same footage found by U.S. forces in the raid in Abbotabad and released, without sound, by the Pentagon, according to SITE Intelligence Group, the research organization that monitors Internet traffic from jihadist Web sites. When the footage was released in May, the Obama administration said it was withholding the audio because it was reluctant to provide al-Qaeda a propaganda platform after his death.
That, apparently, did not stop al-Qaeda’s sophisticated media arm, al-Sahab, from disseminating its own propaganda, which first surfaced on jihadi Web sites late Monday.
According to SITE, bin Laden’s speech includes anti-American, anti-Semitic ravings, not unlike those he issued in scores of other messages before his death. He warned Americans against “falling as slaves” to corporations. He said they must avoid the sway of “Jewish money capital.”
And, according to a partial translation from SITE, he recommended that Americans read Woodward’s book “Obama’s Wars” to understand that his campaign slogan, “Yes, we can,” was untrue.
Exactly what bin Laden would recommend about Woodward’s book was unclear, at least in the partial translation. (SITE said a full translation would be forthcoming.) The book, released last fall, documented political strife within the Obama administration over policy in Afghanistan.
In his audio segment, Zawahiri “speaks at length about events in the past year in the Muslim world vis-à-vis the Arab Spring, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq” and the death of bin Laden, SITE said. He declared that al-Qaeda supports the revolutions, even though some argued have that the uprisings, largely secular in nature, have shown the terrorist network to be ever more irrelevant.
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