As-Sahab, al-Qaida’s multimedia production arm, issued today, Monday, September 11, 2006, a one hour sixteen minute video interview conducted by the group, with Dr. Ayman al-Zawahiri. The video, titled: “Hot Issues,” concerns events and issues of salience to the Muslim Nation and Western peoples, and features al-Qaida’s number two dressed in white and seated in front of bookshelves of books. The topics covered during the course of the interview range from jihad in Iraq and Afghanistan, the recent conflict between Lebanon and Israel, Muslims who collaborate with Western governments, the denial of leaders of the Egyptian Islamic Group (al-Gama’a al-Islamiya) about the joining of an “important section” of the group with al-Qaida, in addition to the Salafist Group for Call and Combat (GSPC) in Algeria joining al-Qaida. Zawahiri also reiterates words made by Usama bin Laden regarding jihad in Somalia, calling upon the Muslim Somali people to “reject the American Crusader presence in Somalia to strike with strength America’s underlings in Somalia, and to see help from Allah”. He also castigates Western political leaders, specifically U.S. President George W. Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair for not accepting bin Laden’s truce and causing their people to reap the “disaster” which will shock them.
To the Western peoples, Dr. Ayman al-Zawahiri states near the conclusion of the speech:
“I tell them your leaders are hiding from you the true extent of the disaster which will shock you. And the days are pregnant and giving birth to new events with Allah's permission and guidance. And I tell them, you have provided us with all the legal and rational reasons to fight you and retaliate from you, you have committed ugly crimes and broken the treaties which you used ti impose on others. And for our part, we have repeatedly warned you and repeatedly offered a truce with you, and so we now have all legal and rational justifications to continue to fight you until your power is destroyed or you give in and surrender.”
“And I tell them you shouldn't bother yourselves with defending your forces in Iraq and Afghanistan because they are doomed to defeat and are all but defeated fighting their last battles. Rather, you should reinforce your defenses in two regions. The first is the Gulf, from where you will be expelled, Allah willing, after your defeat in Iraq, at which point your economic ruin will be achieved. And the second is Israel, because the Jihadi reinforcements are getting closer to it, with Allah's Help and Power, and your defeat there will put an end to contemporary Zionist/Crusader superiority....”
During the course of the interview, Zawahiri impresses upon Muslims the need for jihad, support for other Muslims in Lebanon and Palestine, and further, calls upon them “to make use of every opportunity afforded him to take revenge on America for its imprisonment of Shaykh 'Umar 'Abd al-Rahman”.
<b>CAUTION: This item has not been reviewed for content. This item may contain images of graphic violence, or appear to explicitly encourage violent acts against certain groups or individuals. It may also include inappropriate language.</b>