Al Qaeda Tape Expected Soon

Ayman al Zawahiri is expected to release another tape soon in which he will discuss the Pope, President Bush, and Darfur.


CAIRO, Egypt – Al-Qaida No. 2 Ayman al-Zawahri will soon release a new message about the pope, U.S. President George W. Bush and Sudan’s troubled Darfur region, an Islamic Web site said Wednesday.

A banner warning of the upcoming message was posted on an Islamic Web site that frequently airs al-Qaida videos. Wednesday’s notice did not specify whether the new message was a video, audiotape or text, but al-Zawahri usually releases videos.

His latest came earlier this month, to coincide with the fifth anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks. Al-Qaida released a string of videos for the anniversary, showing increasingly sophisticated production techniques in a likely effort to demonstrate that it remains a powerful, confident force five years into the U.S.-led war on terror.

Laura Mansfield says that the following banner is on jihadists websites:


The Blotter is also reporting that Bin Laden is alive and may release a tape to prove it.

In a surprise phone call to the home of an ABC News producer in Pakistan, the top Taliban military commander, Mulla Dadullah Akhund, said Osama bin Laden is alive and that there is no truth to the rumors of his death from typhoid

“Sheikh Osama is all right. He is safe,” Dadullah told ABC News’ Rahimullah Yusufzai. Dadullah would not disclose the location from where he was calling.

In the past, Dadullah has issued statements to the effect that bin Laden and Taliban leader Mulla Mohammad Omar are alive and leading the resistance against U.S.-led foreign forces in Afghanistan.

When pressed for evidence to show that bin Laden is alive, Dadullah hinted that there is a possibility of a tape being sent to media organizations to prove that the al Qaeda head isn’t dead. Dadullah, however, declined to say as to when this tape would be made available.

I must admit, this makes me a little nervous. Why? Remember Hamid Mir’s Ramadan warning? My post was a summary of Allahpundit’s in which I highlighted the items I thought were the most important to Wizbang readers. Well, Allahpundit posted an update that I, unfortunately, didn’t get to, which included Hamid Mir’s conversation with al Qaeda Afghan commander Abu Dawood:

“We have a different plan for the next attack,” [AQ Afghan commander Abu Dawood] told Mir. “You will see. Americans will hardly find out any Muslim names, after the next attack. Most of our brothers are living in Western countries, with Jewish and Christian names, with passports of Western countries. This time, someone with the name of Mohamed Atta will not attack inside America, it would be some David, Richard or Peter.”

He said there will be another audio message from bin Laden aired within the next two weeks.

Mir reportedly interviewed Dawood Sept. 12 at the tomb of Sultan Mehmud Ghaznawi on the outskirts of Kabul. Dawood and the al-Qaida leaders who accompanied him were clean-shaven and dressed as Western reporters.

I don’t know if a Bin Laden tape would further support Hamid Mir’s report of a nuclear attack during Ramadan, but I do think it’s worrisome. Allahpundit wonders: “Is the worry-meter about to go to code orange?”

Update: Stop the ACLU is also reporting on the new OBL tape and says this:

I’m wondering if these will be video tapes or audio. Around the circle we go again. Doesn’t this cycle repeat itself often? He’s dead and then he comes out to show he isn’t. Don’t grow complacent though, especially with the reports of an American Hiroshima. We’ve missed the signs in the past on numerous occassions and paid the price. We are still pointing fingers on that.

Personally I don’t think he is dead, but a pre-produced vague tape doesn’t reallly prove he isn’t either. I wonder if he will come out with the tape in time for it to be considered a Rovian October surprise.

Update II: Ace makes an interesting point about a possible Bin Laden tape:

Osama makes/made a lot of tapes. If there is a new tape, I’ll be listening for the possibility of multiple outs. For example, he knew of the SkyBomb plan quite a long time ago. It is no difficult trick to produce one tape exalting the SkyBombers for their success and another tape celebrating their failed attempt.

And, if he’s dead — or gravely ill, and not suitable for videotaping — it’s not hard to get the right pre-recorded tape to Al Jazeera.

The simple fact that Osama may vaguely reference a recent incident — which would have been known to him long ago — and correctly (though vaguely) notes the outcome of the event is not quite proof he’s alive.

Sound farfetched? Tell that to Queen. As his death approached, Freddie Mercury recorded dozens of demo tracks of his (weakening) vocals for new songs he wrote in a hurry, so as to make sure his longtime bandmates would have at least one or two albums’ worth of Queen songs with his voice, if they so chose.

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