Tags: Bin | Laden's | Latest | Rant

Bin Laden's Latest Rant

Thursday, 31 January 2002 12:00 AM

"We will work to continue this battle, God permitting, until victory or until we meet God," said bin Laden, the mastermind of the Sept. 11 terror attacks in the United States.

The interview was conducted by the Qatar-based Al Jazeera network in late October but never aired. The network severed all ties with CNN after Thursday's broadcast. CNN said it obtained the tape through non-government sources.

In the interview, bin Laden is seen talking to Al Jazeera's Kabul reporter, who left the Afghan capital soon after its fall to the anti-Taliban forces on Nov. 13. Although it has been more than two months since the Taliban collapsed, bin Laden's whereabouts are still a mystery.

"I tell you, freedom and human rights in America are doomed," bin Laden said. "The U.S. government will lead the American people, and the West in general, into an unbearable hell and a choking life."

Bin Laden was ambiguous about taking blame for the Sept. 11 attacks that killed some 3,000 people.

"America has made many accusations against us and many other Muslims around the world," he said. "Its charge that we are carrying out acts of terrorism is unwarranted."

But moments later, he owned up to "inciting people."

"If inciting people to do that is terrorism, and if killing those who kill our sons is terrorism, then let history be witness that we are terrorists," he said.

Although broadcast for the first time Thursday, the interview had been viewed by world leaders and senior officials in many countries.

Bin Laden also did not give a direct answer when asked if he was behind the anthrax-tainted mail sent to U.S. politicians and media outlets.

"These diseases are a punishment from God and a response to oppressed mothers' prayers in Lebanon and Palestine," he said.

He tried to defend the killing of non-military personnel in the West. "We kill the kings of the infidels, kings of the crusaders and civilian infidels in exchange for those of our children they kill," he said. "This is permissible in Islamic law and logically."

He also described as "humorous" the Bush administration's request to U.S. media organizations not to broadcast earlier bin Laden interviews lest they contain hidden messages to his followers in the United States. "They made hilarious claims. They said that Osama's messages have codes in them to the terrorists," he said. "It's as if we were living in the time of mail by carrier pigeon, when there are no phones, no travelers, no Internet, no regular mail, no express mail and no electronic mail.

"I mean, these are very humorous things. They discount people's intellect."

Copyright 2002 by United Press International.

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We will work to continue this battle, God permitting, until victory or until we meet God, said bin Laden, the mastermind of the Sept. 11 terror attacks in the United States. The interview was conducted by the Qatar-based Al Jazeera network in late October but never aired....
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2002-00-31
Thursday, 31 January 2002 12:00 AM
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