Bin Laden joins the queue

He’s going to declare war on Musharraf

Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden declares “war” on Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf and his army in a new message to be released by the network’s media arm, according to IntelCenter, a US organization, which monitors Islamist websites.

IntelCenter said the video or audio message, entitled “Come to Jihad,” was expected to be released in the next 72 hours.

Meanwhile, in another video released by Al-Qaeda’s media arm, Al-Sahab, bin Laden’s deputy Ayman al-Zawahiri also warned that Musharraf would be “punished” over the killing of a Pakistani cleric killed in the storming of the Red Mosque in Islamabad in July. [IE]

While this may or may not mean much to Gen Musharraf’ security, it’s likely to help him look good in America. And that, unfortunately, is what really counts at this time.

Update: The tapeworm’s message is out and roundly condemns “Pervez” (they are on first name terms). Interestingly, bin Laden compares the Lal Masjid operation to the demolition of Babri Masjid in India.

Another update: Megan McArdle’s offers some astute commentary:

But why would Osama do this? Previously, he had a fairly stable arrangement; Musharraf couldn’t root him out of the tribal areas for various military and political reasons, and Osama couldn’t bring on the Caliphate just yet. But last time I looked, the Caliphate didn’t seem terribly imminent. Meanwhile, he has just given Pervez Musharraf and any waverers in his government a much stronger incentive to find Osama and his merry band of cave-dwelling madmen.

This is the kind of overreach that has caused every government that has ever offered him shelter to ultimately kick him out, except for Afghanistan, which didn’t have much of a government. Even so, he went and found another government to kick him out. And where will he go this time? He’s running out of lawless quasi-states to hide in. [Megan McArdle/Atlantic]

4 thoughts on “Bin Laden joins the queue”

  1. So is the considered view that Bin Laden is still a sideshow as far as Pakistan is concerned, is there no scenario where interests of sections of the Pakistani establishment and Bin Laden converge ?

  2. hey i have drawn heavily from one of yur blogs for something i have been keen on writing for quite sometime…it was really good..and put my project in perspective..keep up teh good work!

  3. Re: “…it’s likely to help him look good in America.”

    The timing is suspiciously fortuitous. The last time Musharraf faced a major challenge — the public protests on the issue of the Chief Justice — the Lal Masjid brouhaha occurred; now, a few days after his regime seems to have embarked on another collision course with public opinion, there’s this.

    [Someone stop me! I don’t want to end up like one of those loony conspiracy theorists… 🙂 ]

  4. Stop it Umair 🙂

    Regarding Megan, I am not sure what she’s saying – that Osama and Mush are working together(as Umair is suggesting also)?

Comments are closed.