HONG KONG, Sep 13 – Al-Qaeda has released a video marking the anniversary of 9/11 which includes a message from its slain leader Osama bin Laden to the American people, monitoring group SITE Intelligence said on Tuesday.
SITE said the 62-minute video titled “The Dawn of Imminent Victory” also includes a speech by Al-Qaeda’s new chief Ayman al-Zawahiri who applauds the “Arab Spring” revolutions.
The US intelligence monitoring service said the footage of bin Laden appears to be the same material found in the US raid on his Pakistan hideout in May, which Washington released but without its soundtrack.
Bin Laden, who was killed by US Navy SEALs in the covert operation, warned Americans against “falling as slaves” to the control of major corporations and “Jewish money capital”, SITE said.
He recommended that Americans read the book “Obama’s War” by Bob Woodward which details wrangles over US military decision-making, and told them that US President Barack Obama’s campaign slogan “Yes, we can” is untrue.
Zawahiri, who is now Washington’s most wanted man, makes a long speech about events in the past year including the revolutions in the Arab world and the death of bin Laden whom he replaced after a long period as Al-Qaeda number-two.
“Zawahiri… declared that contrary to what is reported in the media, Al-Qaeda supports the revolutions and hopes it will establish true Islam and sharia-based governance,” SITE said.
“The popular revolutions, he stated, are a form of defeat for the United States, just as the 9/11 attacks and its alleged lack of success in Afghanistan and Iraq were also defeats.”
Al-Qaeda has been absent from the popular protests that have swept the Arab world this year, leading to the fall of leaders in Egypt, Libya and Tunisia and provoking major unrest elsewhere.
Analysts argue that the phenomenon has left the global terror outfit weakened and increasingly irrelevant.
Zawahiri lauded his predecessor bin Laden as a fighter who had taken on the Russians in Afghanistan as well as the Americans, and who he said had sacrificed everything for his campaign.
“America is denying the fact that it is not facing individuals or groups but the whole ummah (Muslim community) of Islam. After the martyrdom of Sheikh Osama, the Islamic face of the revolutions was shown,” he said.
“America’s arrogant nature will push it to deny the facts that it is facing a rising ummah and that it may be a cause of defeat and its fall, with permission from Allah.”
Zawahiri was only shown in a still picture in the video, which was released by Al-Qaeda’s media arm, as-Sahab, and posted on jihadist websites Monday, SITE said.
Like his slain Saudi-born co-conspirator, Zawahiri has been in hiding since the United States declared its war on terrorism after the September 11, 2001 attacks.
The US on Sunday marked the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 strikes in emotional ceremonies held under tight security after federal authorities warned of a new terrorism scare.