Al Jazeera airs new Osama Bin Laden tape

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Thursday, January 19, 2006

The Qatar-based Arabic news channel, Al Jazeera, announced receipt of the audio tape purportedly from Osama Bin Laden. Portions were broadcast in which Bin Laden offers a "a long-term truce" to allow rebuilding of Afghanistan and Iraq while also making threats of "new attacks" against the United States.

FBI photo of Osama Bin Laden.

Following are several excerpts from the tape.

"Heightened security measures in the United States are not the reason there have been no attacks there since the Sept. 11, 2001, suicide hijackings, because there are operations that need preparations, and you will see them. Based on what I have said, it is better not to fight the Muslims on their land. We do not mind offering you a truce that is fair and long-term. ... So we can build Iraq and Afghanistan ... there is no shame in this solution because it prevents wasting of billions of dollars ... to merchants of war. I would also like to say that the war against America and its allies will not be confined to Iraq. Iraq has become a magnet for attracting and training talented fighters. As for similar operations taking place in America, it's only a matter of time. They are in the planning stages and you will see them in the heart of your land as soon as the planning is complete."
"This message is about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and how to end those wars. It was not my intention to talk to you about this, because those wars are definitely going our way. But what triggered my desire to talk to you is the continuous deliberate misinformation given by your president [George W.] Bush, when it comes to polls made in your home country which reveal that the majority of your people are willing to withdraw U.S. forces from Iraq."
"If your desire for peace, stability and reconciliation was true, here we have given you the answer to your call. I would like to tell you that everything is going to our advantage and the number of your dead is increasing, according to Pentagon figures. The new operations of al-Qaeda has not happened not because we could not penetrate the security measures. It is being prepared and you'll see it in your homeland very soon. We do not mind establishing a long-term truce between us and you."

In a White House press conference today, Press Secretary Scott McClellan showed no fear: "We are taking the fight to the enemy and we will find them where ever they are. Terrorists view democracy as a threat. We will not let up or stop until the job is done. We will win this war on terrorism. We do not negotiate with terrorists, we put them out of business. We're working to advance freedom and democracy. We will pursue those who seek to do harm."

The CIA ran voice analyzer tests on the tape against previous tapes and confirmed that the tape is authentic and that of Bin Laden's voice.

This tape, says Michael Scheuer, former head of the CIA's Bin Laden unit, "proves two things...he's not dead. And despite all the things we say about him being isolated and alone, he can clearly dominate the international media when he wants to."

Judith Yaphe, a former CIA Middle East analyst now at the National Defense University in Washington says, "He's saying that whatever measures we've taken, they have not affected him. He's got to reassure people that he's alive and well."

No conditions of the truce offering were present in the portion of the tape broadcast.

Al Jazeera also says that the tape was made during the Muslim holy month of December, in 2005.

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This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.

U.S. officials also say the terror alert level will not be raised as of yet.

The Associated Press is also reporting that there is no unusual amounts of "chatter", which is what U.S. officials term as terrorist talk.

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