Monday, July 26, 2004

What does Bin Ladin want?  I am reading the 9/11 Commission Report.  The other night I heard on television a pundit ask whether Bin Ladin's objective is to get us out of Saudi Arabia, where the "holiest of Muslim shrines are located".  Bin Ladin's objective is a bit more ambitious, according to the 9/11 Commission.  It reports that in February 1998, Bin Ladin and his associate Ayman al Zawahiri issued a fatwah in which "they called for the murder of any American, anywhere on earth, as the 'individual duty for every Muslim who can do it in any country in which it is possible to do it.' "

Three months later, the Report states, in an interview in Afghanistan by ABC-TV, Bin Ladin said, "We believe that the worst thieves in the world today and the worst terrorists are the Americans.  Nothing could stop you except perhaps retaliation in kind.  We do not have to differentiate between military or civilian.  As far as we are concerned, they are all targets."

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