by Austin Bay
April 26, 2006
Last week, on a tape aired by the Arab news channel Al-Jazeera,
a voice claiming to be Osama bin Laden declared war on the world.
The geographic range of the 21st century caveman's rambling
verbal jihad should impress Rand McNally.
Bin Laden's latest tape promotes attacks in India, Kashmir, East
Timor, East Africa and Sudan.
The Sudan rant is particularly interesting. He fingers the
proposed U.N. peacekeeping force in Sudan's tragic Darfur region as an
enemy -- which suggests bin Laden supports Sudan's genocide in Darfur. He
encourages combat against large swaths of the human race. He condemns his
Zionist-Crusader enemies (that usually means Israel and the United States,
but now appears to include the United Nations). He dumps threatening bile on
We know he doesn't like Buddhists -- his Taliban allies proved
that when they literally defaced Afghanistan's Bamiyan buddhas with high
explosives. Confucianists seem to get a pass, but after al-Qaida defeats the
West and subdues the subcontinent, no doubt Osama will crush China and the
Muslims, however, remain bin Laden's biggest enemy, perhaps not
in theory and propaganda, but certainly in the flesh-and-blood world of
murder and human massacre. Bin Laden, al-Qaida and its various affiliates
have killed more Muslims than any other religious group, and Darfur is an
Since early 2003, nearly 200,000 people have died in the Sudan
government's war with Darfur rebels. The Sudan government backs a variety of
Islamist militias, many of them operating on horseback or in wheeled
"technical vehicles" armed with light machine guns and rocket launchers.
Darfur's rebels are a mixed bag of farmers, villagers and pastoralists. The
rebels are also an ethnic mishmash, though most of them are black Africans.
For the most part, they are Muslims, however, with a leavening of tribal
Here are bin Laden's purported taped instructions vis a vis
Darfur: "I call on mujahedeen and their supporters, especially in Sudan and
the Arab peninsula, to prepare for long war again the Crusader plunderers in
Western Sudan. Our goal is not defending the Khartoum government, but to
defend Islam, its land and its people."
If the tape is authentic -- and that is a big if -- the call for
an anti-U.N. jihad in Darfur is another self-inflicted information warfare
wound by al-Qaida.
Bin Laden is upset because the United Nations intends to take
control of the Darfur peacekeeping mission. The African Union (AU) is in
charge of the current peacekeeping operation, and it has failed to stop the
That's one reason this latest tape is a major propaganda error:
Most of the world's opinion leaders -- including the liberal and left-wing
"internationalistas" who spend a great deal of airtime, ink and electrons
excusing Arab terrorists (particularly Hamas) -- have made the Darfur horror
a cause celebre (ironically excusing one band of Islamic extremists, while
Bin Laden has also made a second major political error: The
peacekeeping mission is meant to protect Muslims. Once again, al-Qaida is
promoting the murder of Muslims, a point the United States has been making
since Sept. 12, 2001. It's not a new insight, but it has taken four and half
years to make the point. Al-Qaida's bloody trail in Iraq is part of the
proof. Al-Qaida's car bombs and suicide bombs in Iraq were detonated in the
heart of the politically dysfunctional Arab Muslim Middle East. They killed
a few American "Crusaders," but most of the dead are Arab Muslims (both Shia
In the Darfur region, the black African Muslims savaged by the
Islamist militias aren't quite "Muslim enough" for the True Believers and
the Sudan government.
In the 1990s, Sudan served as a haven and a base for bin Laden
and key al-Qaida cadres. Perhaps bin Laden thinks he's paying off a
political debt to Sudan's Islamists. That noted, the Sudan government has
rejected bin Laden's call for a Darfur jihad.
Why? Because bin Laden's a loser -- a dangerous loser still
capable of mass murder, but no longer the ideological juggernaut of global