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The Messages of al Qaeda: Chronological Summary

2001-Present

Year: 2004

16 December 2004: Audio of Osama bin Laden in which he praised a terrorist attack on a US consulate in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia on 6 December 2004, an attack that killed 5. bin Laden delivers a message (74 minutes 14 seconds in length ) about the conflict between the rulers and the people of Saudi Arabia, stating that while Saudi leaders blame "holy warriors" for trouble in the kingdom, "the truth is that the whole responsibility falls on the shoulders of the regime."
Type: AUDIO: 74 minutes, 14 seconds

29 November 2004: Zawahiri says al-Qaida will continue to attack the United States until it changes its policies towards the Muslim world. In a videotape broadcast by al-Jazeera, he speaks for "a nation of patience [that] will continue fighting you until the last hour". The recording appeared to have been made before the US presidential election. In one excerpt he says the result is of no interest to al-Qaida. "Vote for whoever you want, Bush, Kerry or the devil himself. This does not concern us. What concerns us is to purge our land from the aggressors." He advises the Americans to choose between one of two things: "Either you choose to treat us with respect and based on an exchange of interests ... or we will continue to fight you until you change your policies."
Type: VIDEO

29 October 2004: Days before the US presidential election, a videotape of Bin Laden surfaces, with the al-Qaida leader admitting responsibility for the September 11 attacks for the first time and threatening new strikes against America. "Despite entering the fourth year after September 11, Bush is still deceiving you and hiding the truth from you, and therefore the reasons are still there to repeat what happened," he says. He also suggests that the idea for the September 11 attacks stretched as far back as the Israeli aerial bombardment of tall buildings in Beirut in 1982.
TYPE: VIDEO

1 October 2004: Ayman al Zawahiri urges Muslims to mount worldwide resistance to "crusader America" and its western allies, in an audiotape recording broadcast by al-Jazeera. "Let us start resisting now ... We can't wait or we will be eaten up, country by country," stated Zawwahiri. "People of knowledge and experience should organize their efforts and form a leadership for the resistance to combat the crusaders." Zawahiri lists American allies to be targeted, including Britain, Australia, Poland, South Korea and Japan. The release of this message coincided with the homicide bombing of a Shia mosque in Pakistan that killed at least 25 people.
Type: AUDIO

9 September 2004: In an audiotape of Ayman al Zawahiri broadcast by al Jazeera, he says the US faces defeat in Iraq and Afghanistan. "The Americans in both countries are between two fires. If they continue they bleed to death and if they withdraw they lose everything." Zawahiri also states: "Southern and eastern Afghanistan have completely become an open field for the mujahideen. The Americans are hiding in their trenches and refuse to come out to face the mujahideen, as the mujahideen shell them, fire on them and cut roads off around them. Their defense is only to bomb by air." Another significant excerpt: "You, youth of Islam, this is our message: If we die or are detained, continue the path after us, and don't betray God and his prophet, and don't knowingly betray the trust."
Type: AUDIO

12 June 2004: Al-Arabiya broadcasts audio tape reportedly of Ayman al Zawahiri in which he criticizes a US plan to reform the Middle East as a ploy and says "change will only come through resistance".
TYPE: AUDIO

7 May 2004: A recorded message attributed to Bin Laden offers 10kg or 22pounds of gold to anyone killing the US administrator in Iraq, Paul Bremer, or the UN secretary general, Kofi Annan. A smaller amount of gold is offered to anyone killing soldiers or civilians from countries that are "possessors of the (UN security council) veto, such as the Americans or Britons." The authenticity of the 20-minute message, which was posted on two Islamic websites, remains questionable.
Type: AUDIO

15 April 2004: A purported Bin Laden tape is broadcast on al-Arabiya. The speaker offers a truce to European countries that decide not to "interfere" in Muslim countries but rules out any such deal with the US. "President Bush and leaders in his sphere, big media institutions, and the United Nations ... all of them are a fatal danger to the world, and the Zionist lobby is their most dangerous and difficult member, and we insist, God willing, on continuing to fight them." Bin Laden also vows revenge for the killing of Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, the Hamas spiritual leader, in an Israeli helicopter strike.
Type: AUDIO

26 March 2004: Ayman al-Zawahiri, the second top al Qaeda terrorist thug, recorded a videotape that was broadcast on al-Jazeera for seven minutes, featuring al Zawahiri calling Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf a "traitor" for seeking to "stab the Islamic resistance in Afghanistan in the back".
TYPE: VIDEO

4 January 2004: An audiotape broadcast on al-Jazeera, claiming to be Bin Laden, calls on Muslims to "continue the jihad to check the conspiracies hatched against the Islamic nation". It criticizes the government of Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states for supporting the US, saying that "the occupation of Iraq is the beginning of the full occupation of the other Gulf states".
Type: AUDIO

Year: 2003

18 October 2003: Bin Laden releases two audiotapes, a series of videotaped threats and several filmed statements by suicide bombers who died in the attacks in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in May 2003. The tapes call for attacks on British and US troops in Iraq and "Christians and Jews... who occupy Islamic lands".
Type: AUDIO

28 September 2003: Al-Jazeera and al-Arabiya broadcast excerpts of an audiotape supposedly made by Ayman al-Zawahri calling on Pakistanis to overthrow their president and accusing the US of "trying to abolish Islam." Al-Jazeera reportedly received a telephone call "from an unknown person saying they had a recording that is of concern to you" and suggested the station tape the rest of the phone call, stated al Jazeera spokesman Jihad Ballout. Zawahiri also warned against "an American, Jewish, and Indian alliance against Muslims." One significant excerpt: "We want all Christians and Jews to go out from our Islamic countries and release our brothers from jail and stop killing Muslims or we will kill you, state one terrorist in this compilation. "We promise we will not let you live safely and you will not see from us anything but bombs, fire, destroying homes and cutting heads. Our mujahideen are coming to you very soon to make you see what you didn't see before."
Type: AUDIO

10 September 2003: Al-Jazeera airs a videotape that seems to show a gaunt Osama bin Laden walking through mountainous terrain with Ayman al-Zawahiri. Although the men do not address the camera, a soundtrack accompanying the tape contains audio of Ayman al Zawahiri commanding fighters in Iraq to rise up against the occupying forces and "devour the Americans". He names US President George Bush, and Tony Blair as the "top criminals". In an audiotape that accompanies the video footage, the two men also refer to the second anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks.
TYPE: VIDEO

8 April 2003: The Associated Press news agency receives an audio tape of Osama bin Laden calling for Muslims to rise up in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bahrain, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, criticizing the governments in those countries for supporting the US-led Iraq war. The audiotape was obtained by the Associated Press from an Algerian national identified only as "Aadil" in remote north-western Pakistan. "Aadil" stated that he "slipped across the border from Afghanistan" where the tape was apparently recorded.
Type: AUDIO

11 February 2003: Al-Jazeera broadcasts an audiotape from Osama bin Laden calling on Iraqis to carry out homicide attacks against US forces. US administration calls the tape evidence of an alliance between al-Qaeda and Baghdad. Other sections of the recording say "all socialist regimes are run by unbelievers, including that of Iraq."
Type: AUDIO

Year: 2002

8 December 2002: An audio recording purporting to be a claim of responsibility for a suicide attack on an Israeli-owned hotel in Kenya is broadcast on al-Jazeera. "The Jewish Crusader coalition will not be safe anywhere from the fighters' attacks," says a speaker claiming to be Abu GHAITH.
Type: AUDIO

12 November 2002: Al-Jazeera broadcasts an audiotape purporting to be by Bin Laden in which he praises terrorist attacks in Bali, Moscow and against a French tanker off the coast of Yemen. It links Australia's role in East Timor to the October 2002 Bali nightclub bombings. "They ignored our warning and woke up to the sound of explosions in Bali, but the government pretended they were not the target," stated bin Laden. US intelligence officials confirm it is a recent recording of Bin Laden, making it the first "conclusive" evidence in almost a year that he is alive, although doubts over its authenticity later emerge.
Type: AUDIO

9 September 2002: An audio recoding of Osama bin Laden praises the hijackers as "great men who deepened the roots of faith in the hearts of the faithful". The video was broadcast on al-Jazeera and shows men in a Kandahar house preparing for the attack. Items on a table included an air chart of the US, and a flight instruction manual. "As we talk about the conquests of Washington and New York," the voice says, "we talk about those men who changed the course of history and cleaned the records of the nation from the dirt of the treasonous rulers and their followers".
Type: AUDIO

19 August 2002: CNN broadcasts an al-Qaeda video showing what appears to be poison gas tests on a dog. Also among the 60 tapes obtained by CNN is a video segment of a 1998 press conference to mark al-Qaeda's merger with Egyptian Islamic Jihad. In this footage, bin Laden declares a formal jihad against "crusaders and Jews."
TYPE: VIDEO

23 June 2002: An audio cassette that purports to be from Abu GHAITH says that Osama bin Laden is alive and planning fresh attacks. He claims responsibility for the April truck bombing of Africa's oldest synagogue, on the Tunisian island of Djerba, which killed 21 people.
Type: AUDIO

15 April 2002: Al-Jazeera Television shows excerpts from a forthcoming documentary made by the "PR arm" of-al-Qaeda, "Clouds Enterprises," featuring previously unseen footage of Osama bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri near a stream. Another video is a message from Ahmed al-HAZNAWI, one of the Flight 93 hijackers in a segment called "The Wills of the New York and Washington Battle Martyrs." In this pre-recorded footage, the 22-year-old Saudi terrorist pledges to give his life to "martyrdom" and swears to send a "bloodied message" to Americans by attacking them in their "heartland".
TYPE: VIDEO

Year: 2001

26 December 2001: In this video of bin laden, he is shown look pale and gaunt. Bin Laden appears to take credit for the September 11 attacks. "Our terrorism against the United States is worthy of praise to deter the oppressor so that America stop its support for Israel, which is killing our children," states bin Laden. He is shown against a brown blanket in an apparent attempt to disguise any clues that may disclose his location. The video was filmed to mark three months since the "blessed attack" on the US, he says, indicating that he survived the US assault on his bases.
TYPE: VIDEO

13 December 2001: Released by the Pentagon, the bin laden video footage shows him discussing the September 11th attacks with guests at an al-Qaeda dinner at a house in Kandahar, Afghanistan. At one point, bin laden smiles and explains how "we calculated in advance the number of casualties from the enemy based on the position of the tower," but the attack surpassed his expectations. "I was thinking that the fire from the fuel in the plane would melt the iron structure of the building and collapse the area where the plane hit and the floors above it only. That is all we had hoped for." The footage was reportedly found Apparently found in late November in an abandoned house in Jalalabad; the video was identified as conclusive proof that Bin Laden was behind the attacks on America.
TYPE: VIDEO

13 October 2001: Al-Jazeera broadcasts a video of Sulaiman Abu GHITH, an al-Qaeda spokesman, warning that "thousands of Muslim youths" are eager to die. "The storms will not calm, especially the aircraft storm," he says. "We also say and advise the Muslims in the US and Britain, the children, and those who reject the unjust US policy, not to travel by plane. We also advise them not to live in highrise buildings and towers."
TYPE: VIDEO

7 October 2001: Shortly after the first US missiles hit Kabul, bin Laden appears in this video dressed in combat fatigues somewhere in the rocky Afghan terrain. Obviously pre-recorded, its impact is as if he was speaking live as he condemns the hours-old attack as a war on Islam. "I say these events have split the whole world into two camps: the camp of the faithful and the camp of the infidels," stated bin Laden. "Every Muslim should support his religion." This video contains bin Laden's first public response to the September 11 attacks: "America is full of fear from its north to its south, from its west to its east. Thank God for that," he says. "Our nation has been tasting fear, hatred and injustices for years."
TYPE: VIDEO

Text of Speech

I bear witness that there is no God but Allah and that Mohammed is his messenger. There is America, hit by God in one of its softest spots. Its greatest buildings were destroyed, thank God for that.

There is America, full of fear from its north to its south, from its west to its east. Thank God for that. What America is tasting now, is something insignificant compared to what we have tasted for scores of years. Our nation (the Islamic world) has been tasting this humiliation and this degradation for more than 80 years. Its sons are killed, its blood is shed, its sanctuaries are attacked, and no one hears and no one heeds.

When God blessed one of the groups of Islam, vanguards of Islam, they destroyed America. I pray to God to elevate their status and bless them. Millions of innocent children are being killed as I speak. They are being killed in Iraq without committing any sins and we don't hear condemnation or a fatwa from the rulers.

In these days, Israeli tanks infest Palestine - in Jenin, Ramallah, Rafah, Beit Jalla, and other places in the land of Islam, and we don't hear anyone raising his voice or moving a limb. When the sword comes down (on America), after 80 years, hypocrisy rears its ugly head. They deplore and they lament for those killers, who have abused the blood, honour, and sanctuaries of Muslims. The least that can be said about those people, is that they are debauched. They have followed injustice. They supported the butcher over the victim, the oppressor over the innocent child. May God show them His wrath and give them what they deserve.

I say that the situation is clear and obvious. After this event, after the senior officials have spoken in America, starting with the head of infidels worldwide, Bush, and those with him. They have come out in force with their men and have turned even the countries that belong to Islam to this treachery, and they want to wag their tail at God, to fight Islam, to supress people in the name of terrorism.

When people at the ends of the earth, Japan, were killed by their hundreds of thousands, young and old, it was not considered a war crime, it is something that has justification. Millions of children in Iraq, is something that has justification. But when they lose dozens of people in Nairobi and Dar es Salaam (capitals of Kenya and Tanzania, where US embassies were bombed in 1998), Iraq was struck and Afghanistan was struck. Hypocrisy stood in force behind the head of infidels worldwide, behind the cowards of this age, America and those who are with it.

These events have divided the whole world into two sides. The side of believers and the side of infidels, may God keep you away from them. Every Muslim has to rush to make his religion victorious. The winds of faith have come. The winds of change have come to eradicate oppression from the island of Muhammad, peace be upon him.

To America, I say only a few words to it and its people. I swear by God, who has elevated the skies without pillars, neither America nor the people who live in it will dream of security before we live it in Palestine, and not before all the infidel armies leave the land of Muhammad, peace by upon him. God is great, may pride be with Islam. May peace and God's mercy be upon you.

5 October 2001: Al-Jazeera shows a video clip of the celebrations when Ayman al-Zawahiri, now Bin Laden's deputy, brought Egyptian Islamic Jihad into al-Qaeda. Bin Laden, dressed in white and beige robes and an Afghan-style dark-coloured turban, occasionally glances at the camera, unsmiling.
TYPE: VIDEO

19 June 2001: A video is released by al-Qaeda showing Osama bin Laden and his supporters training at their al-Farouq base in Afghanistan. Their leader, who is already the US's most wanted man for his role in the 1998 east Africa embassy bombings, is filmed kneeling down in flowing white robes and squeezing the trigger of an AK-47. This video illustrates a celebration of the union of Bin Laden's al-Qaida network and al-Zawahri's Egyptian Jihad group.
TYPE: VIDEO


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