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Friday, October 29, 2004

Ceasefire? 

CNN.com - Bin Laden's message is not a threat, its a cease-fire offer. The translation ends "Any nation that does not attack us will not be attacked" -- if accurate, there is an implicit promise here that Al Quaeda will stop its attacks on the west if the west no longer "spoils" Islamic secutiry. "We want to reclaim our nation" he says -- its not clear whether he means an actual nation-state, like Afghanistan, or the "nation" of Islam. He blames Reagan (Lebanon) and Bush Senior as well as W for the motivation for 9/11, and implies the attack was easier because of US corruption and its impact was worse because W did not respond quickly enough.
Bush should have caught Bin Laden two years ago but has outsourced the job to Pakistan. Its been stated around the web that Bush and his administration are still thinking of terrorism as a threat only when it originates from a nation-state, like Afghanistan or Iraq, and so they took their eye off Bin Laden as soon as his based in Afghanistan was destroyed. Its clear that Bin Laden thinks of himself as the leader of Islam, state-based or not. Kerry is right that he should be America's top priority. But I think the ceasefire offer was the most interesting aspect of the video -- and I wonder how America will respond?

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