New bin Laden Tape Surfaces

Purported new bin Laden tape surfaces (CNN)

Photo:  Osama bin Laden speaks in this image made from an undated video broadcast, Oct. 29, 2004 by Arab television station Al-Jazeera. In the statement, bin Laden directly admitted for the first time that he carried out the Sept. 11 attacks, and said A new audiotape purportedly from Osama bin Laden and referencing the December 6 attack on the American consulate in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, appeared on Arabic Web sites Thursday. The voice on the tape says the current instability in Saudi Arabia is due to the regime there and not the action of the jihadis there. “While the struggle in Saudi Arabia appears to be internal, it is part of the struggle between believers and non-believers” of Islam, the speaker said.

Near the end of the approximately 70-minute tape, the speaker asks for God’s blessings for “our brothers who stormed the American consulate in Jeddah.” “We pray to Allah to accept the mujahedeen who stormed the U.S. consulate in Jeddah as martyrs,” the speaker says. Also on the tape is deep criticism of the Saudi royal family. “Millions are suffering poverty, while rials (Saudi currency) pour into the hands of the Saudi royal family.”

The quality of the recording is poor, but al Qaeda expert Paul Eedle says the voice seems to be that of bin Laden.

It’s certainly the al Qaeda party line. And he has a point on the Saudi royals.

FILED UNDER: Terrorism
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. John says:

    UBL is taking his shots at the Al-Saud (though it’s rather broad and totally ignores the support that family has in the kingdom).

    His real point here, though, is to offer religious argument against representative government. According to his intepretation of Islam, elections are sin. Man (as a voter) cannot exercise the authority to govern that is reserved to God and those God delegates.

    He’s condemning not only the upcoming Saudi elections, but also those in Iraq and Palestine. He fears that once people get a taste of democracy, they’re not going to be buying into his “Divine Right of Caliphs” vision.