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September 07, 2007

New Possibly New Osama Tape Proves He's Alive Quite Possibly Alive
Update: Seems Recent-- Transcript Has Osama Praising Democrats, Noam Chomsky, Kyoto Accord (?!?!)

While everyone is headlining this as proof of life, the actual facts seem a bit fuzzier.

Intelligence sources tell ABC News they believe the video message from Osama bin Laden is authentic, recently produced and evidence the al Qaeda leader is still alive.

According to government sources, an initial analysis of the tape indicates "a lot of chest thumping" and of course historical references "alluding" to the successful attack on New York.

And a CIA spokesman told ABC News, "It's quite possible this is a new video."

U.S. authorities earlier this morning said the tape's transcript is aimed at potential suicide bombers who he urges to carry out missions against the West.

The jihadist Web site announced the tape with a banner, showing a still picture of bin Laden, now 50 years old, looking fit with a full beard of dark black hair, no gray at all.

"It does look oddly like he is wearing a false beard," Richard Clarke, a former White House counterterrorism official and now ABC News consultant, said. "If we go back to the tape three years, he had a very white beard. This looks like a phony beard that has been passed on."

The "phony beard" may be an important clue as to where bin Laden is hiding, according to Clarke.

"One place where a beard would stand out would be southeast Asia, the Philippines, Indonesia," Clarke told ABC News. "No one's thought he was there, but that is an environment where most men, Muslim men don't have beards."

I realize it's a CIA spokesman saying it's only "quite possible" the tape is new, and he may be a bit more cautious about announcing an official judgment than the various leaking intelligence sources ABCNews has. Still, despite the description of the tape the sources are leaking, there is no mention of Osama dating the tape by specifically referring to a recent event. It's quite possible he made such a reference, which of course proves he's alive; but as of yet no one is hinting at what he said that might have prompted the "it's new" conclusion.

Well There You Go: ABCNews now has update and says it has a transcript. The reference to the November 2006 elections suggests he was alive then and is most likely alive now.

Watch him criticize Democrats, Kos-like, for not being forceful enough in trying to end the War in Iraq, and even praise Noam Chomsky and the Kyoto Accord. I'll give him this: he knows his target audience.


Sources tell ABC News the tape is approximately 30 minutes long, and does not contain overt threats to the United States.

...

Bin Laden also spoke to the ongoing situation in Iraq throughout the tape, heavily criticizing the Bush administration.

He says to the American people, "you made one of your greatest mistakes, in that you neither brought to account nor punished those who waged this war, not even the most violent of its murderers, [former Defense Secretary Donald] Rumsfeld…"

"You permitted Bush to complete his first term, and stranger still, chose him for a second term, which gave him a clear mandate from you -- with your full knowledge and consent -- to continue to murder our people in Iraq and Afghanistan. Then you claim to be innocent! The innocence of yours is like my innocence of the blood of your sons on the 11th -- were I to claim such a thing."

Bin Laden says President Bush's words echo "neoconservatives like Cheney, Rumsfeld, and Richard Perle."

"People of America: the world is following your news in regards to your invasion of Iraq, for people have recently come to know that, after several years of tragedies of this war, the vast majority of you want it stopped. Thus, you elected the Democratic Party for this purpose, but the Democrats haven't made a move worth mentioning. On the contrary, they continue to agree to the spending of tens of billions to continue the killing and war there."

...

According to the transcript, bin Laden says there are two ways to end the war:

"The first is from our side, and it is to continue to escalate the killing and fighting against you."

The second is to do away with the American democratic system of government. "It has now become clear to you and the entire world the impotence of the democratic system and how it plays with the interests of the peoples and their blood by sacrificing soldiers and populations to achieve the interests of the major corporations."

The rambling transcript also mentions French President Sarkozy, which suggests the tape was made after Sarkozy's election in May.

Bin Laden comes close to offering a date for the tape with this by saying, "... just a few days ago, the Japanese observed the 62nd anniversary of the annihilation of Hiroshima and Nagasaki by your nuclear weapons." The anniversary was on August 6.

He goes on to call Noam Chomsky "among one of the most capable of those from your own side," and mentions global warming and "the Kyoto accord."

He also speaks to recent issues grabbing headlines in the United States, referring to "the reeling of many of you under the burden of interest-related debts, insane taxes and real estate mortgages; global warming and its woes..."

Dude, this is coming straight from Kos and the DNC. Extraordinary.



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posted by Ace at 02:55 PM

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