Osama bin Laden made an unusually sharp threat of attacks against Israel in a new audiotape posted on the Web today.
“I would like to assure our people in Palestine that we will expand our jihad there,” he said. “We intend to liberate Palestine, the whole of Palestine from the (Jordan) river to the sea,” he continued, threatening “blood for blood, destruction for destruction.”
Bin Laden has frequently vowed to liberate Jerusalem and Palestine in their messages. But the latest comments were a more direct language than bin Laden usually uses. Israel has warned of growing Al-Qaida activity in Palestinian territory, but the terror network is not believed to have taken a strong direct role there so far.
Most of the 56-minute tape dealt with Iraq, in the latest attempt by Al-Qaida to keep its supporters and other insurgents in Iraq unified behind it at a time when the US military claims to have al-Qaeda’s Iraq branch on the run.
The authenticity of the tape could not be independently confirmed. But the voice resembled that of bin Laden. The tape was posted on an Islamic militant Web site where Al-Qaida’s media arm, Al-Sahab, issues the group’s messages.
The tape was the fifth message released by bin Laden this year.
(Haaretz / Ynet)