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November 01, 2004

Bin Ladin Offers Truce to Any State Voting for Kerry

Mickey Kaus will of course spin this as some clever reverse psychology on the mass-murdering cave-dweller's part.

Safire has a similar piece, although he's not privy to the translation that makes it clear that bin Ladin's offering a truce to US states that reject Bush:

The big news in Osama bin Laden's message to American voters was not his intercession in our election; that clumsy ploy was not as successful as his pre-election panicking of Spain's voters.

Nor was the news his delight in the "pet goat" sequence in Michael Moore's Bush-bashing film, and his admonition that "Bush is still deceiving you and hiding the truth from you," echoing the central Kerry theme. Nor was it the frustrating fact that our Global Enemy No. 1 is alive and well and still at large.

The unremarked news is that this mass murderer evidently seeks a kind of truce. Although some coverage of his pre-election message noted an unexpected "conciliatory tone," we have not fixed on the reason for this change in his attitude.

"Each state that does not harm our security will remain safe," bin Laden promised, which was "why we did not attack Sweden, for example." His unmistakable import: if the U.S. were to stop our war on Qaeda terror, which has killed or captured an estimated 75 percent of his closest collaborators, that would be what he called "the ideal way to avoid another Manhattan ..." Stop warring on terror and you will "remain safe."

Generals do not call for a truce when they're winning. Only warriors thrust on the defensive become conciliatory, hoping that negotiations will give them time to regroup and resupply. Bin Laden's vain hope seems to be that the defeat of Bush will give him time to buy or steal a horrific weapon as an "equalizer."

He moves on to other foreign interlopers in our election:

Bin Laden was the second outsider to try to influence our election in an "October surprise." I suspect the first was Mohamed ElBaradei, the chief U.N. arms inspector, said to be miffed at the Bush administration's refusal to support his bid for an unprecedented third term.

He has long known about the presence of "nuclear trigger" explosives (evidence of Saddam's nuclear ambitions?) in one of Iraq's thousands of ammo dumps. But, The Wall Street Journal reports that with exquisite political timing, on Oct. 1 ElBaradei sent a "reminder" to a Baathist science minister renewing the U.N. interest in these particular explosives. That produced a dutiful letter from the Iraqi bureaucrat to the U.N. nine days later that was promptly leaked to CBS News, which apparently turned to the more credible New York Times to do most of the reporting.

He lets the NYT entirely off the hook for its role-- something I've come to expect. The New York Times is like a very exclusive club, or rather, perhaps, a very exclusive cult. Once you're inducted, you don't say anything negative about it.

Even if you're a conservative who knows better, like William Safire or David "It's a balanced newspaper" Brooks.

And a must-read post by Jim Lindgren at the Volokh Mega-Conspiracy, suggesting that Osama seems an avid Michael Moore fan.


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posted by Ace at 04:08 AM

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