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Sunday, January 24, 2010
By Steven L. Taylor

Via CNN:  Report: New bin Laden tape emerges

A new audio tape allegedly from al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden claims responsibility for an attempt to blow up a plane en route to Michigan on Christmas Day and warns the United States of more attacks.

The tape, which aired on the Arabic-language news Web site Al-Jazeera on Sunday, says "the United States will not dream of enjoying safety until we live it in reality in Palestine."

First, one wonders if it really is bin Laden (and also at this point whether it really matters if it is or not).

Second, we already knew that that source was almost certainly al Qaeda in Yemen.  The degree to which Osama, per se, can claim responsibility directly is questionable, save in some generic:  “all AQ is me,” kind of way.

Third, his lag time is worse than British anti-terrorism authorities (who just this week reacted to the December attempt by raising the threat level for the UK).  Everyone does realize that this event took place about a month ago, yes?  Not that should be giving the terrormaster pointers, but if you want maximum dramatic impact (key to a terror plot) then you need to get you “claim of responsibility” out earlier in the story.

Update:  I concur with the following from James Joyner:

Presuming that Osama is still alive and the tape is genuine, it’s quite interesting that he’s now reduced to bragging about horribly botched operations to bolster his credibility.  It would be funnier, of course, if we weren’t massively overreacting to the plot and further snarling our transportation system and curtailing the liberty of our citizens.

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Filed under: War on Terror | |
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