Hallowe'en festivities passed off with a special appearance by OBL (Osama Bin Laden). Many of the news programmes featured snippets of the video but did not record what he said. A copy of the translation appears below courtesy of Aljazeera via CNN. I have not commented on the apparent similarities between OBL and the literary characters Emmanuel Goldstein and Snowball the pig in George Orwell's novel 1984 and Animal Farm respectively because that merits another blog entry all of its own. You can read it at CNN here and a more accurate and lengthly translation courtesy of the English service of Aljazeera here.
You, the American people, I talk to you today about the best way to avoid another catastrophe and about war, its reasons and its consequences.
And in that regard, I say to you that security is an important pillar of human life, and that free people do not compromise their security.
Contrary to what [President George W.] Bush says and claims -- that we hate freedom --let him tell us then, "Why did we not attack Sweden?" It is known that those who hate freedom don't have souls with integrity, like the souls of those 19. May the mercy of God be upon them.
We fought with you because we are free, and we don't put up with transgressions. We want to reclaim our nation. As you spoil our security, we will do so to you.
I wonder about you. Although we are ushering the fourth year after 9/11, Bush is still exercising confusion and misleading you and not telling you the true reason. Therefore, the motivations are still there for what happened to be repeated.
And I will talk to you about the reason for those events, and I will be honest with you about the moments the decision was made so that you can ponder. And I tell you, God only knows, that we never had the intentions to destroy the towers.
But after the injustice was so much and we saw transgressions and the coalition between Americans and the Israelis against our people in Palestine and Lebanon, it occurred to my mind that we deal with the towers. And these special events that directly and personally affected me go back to 1982 and what happened when America gave permission for Israel to invade Lebanon. And assistance was given by the American sixth fleet.
During those crucial moments, my mind was thinking about many things that are hard to describe. But they produced a feeling to refuse and reject injustice, and I had determination to punish the transgressors.
And as I was looking at those towers that were destroyed in Lebanon, it occurred to me that we have to punish the transgressor with the same -- and that we had to destroy the towers in America so that they taste what we tasted, and they stop killing our women and children.
We found no difficulties in dealing with the Bush administration, because of the similarities of that administration and the regimes in our countries, half of which are run by the military and half of which are run by monarchs. And our experience is vast with them.
And those two kinds are full of arrogance and taking money illegally.
The resemblance started when [former President George H.W.] Bush, the father, visited the area, when some of our own were impressed by America and were hoping that the visits would affect and influence our countries.
Then, what happened was that he was impressed by the monarchies and the military regimes, and he was jealous of them staying in power for tens of years, embezzling the public money without any accountability. And he moved the tyranny and suppression of freedom to his own country, and they called it the Patriot Act, under the disguise of fighting terrorism. And Bush, the father, found it good to install his children as governors and leaders.
We agreed with the leader of the group, Mohammed Atta, to perform all attacks within 20 minutes before [President George W.] Bush and his administration were aware of what was going on. And we never knew that the commander-in-chief of the American armed forces would leave 50,000 of his people in the two towers to face those events by themselves when they were in the most urgent need of their leader.
He was more interested in listening to the child's story about the goat rather than worry about what was happening to the towers. So, we had three times the time necessary to accomplish the events.
Your security is not in the hands of [Democratic presidential nominee John] Kerry or Bush or al Qaeda. Your security is in your own hands. Any nation that does not attack us will not be attacked.