Whereas, terrorizing oppressors and criminals and thieves and robbers is
necessary for the safety of people and for the protection of their property.
There is no doubt in this. Every state and every civilization and culture has
to resort to terrorism under certain circumstances for the purpose of
abolishing tyranny and corruption. Every country in the world has its own
security system and its own security forces, its own police and its own army.
They are all designed to terrorize whoever even contemplates to attack that
country or its citizens. The terrorism we practice is of the commendable kind
for it is directed at the tyrants and the aggressors and the enemies of Allah,
the tyrants, the traitors who commit acts of treason against their own
countries and their own faith and their own prophet and their own nation.
Terrorizing those and punishing them are necessary measures to straighten
things and to make them right. Tyrants and oppressors who subject the Arab
nation to aggression ought to be punished. The wrongs and the crimes committed
against the Muslim nation are far greater than can be covered by this
interview. America heads the list of aggressors against Muslims. The
recurrence of aggression against Muslims everywhere is proof enough. For over
half a century, Muslims in Palestine have been slaughtered and assaulted and
robbed of their honor and of their property. Their houses have been blasted,
their crops destroyed. And the strange thing is that any act on their part to
avenge themselves or to lift the injustice befalling them causes great
agitation in the United Nations which hastens to call for an emergency meeting
only to convict the victim and to censure the wronged and the tyrannized whose
children have been killed and whose crops have been destroyed and whose farms
have been pulverized. ...|
In today's wars, there are no morals, and it is clear that mankind has
descended to the lowest degrees of decadence and oppression. They rip us of
our wealth and of our resources and of our oil. Our religion is under attack.
They kill and murder our brothers. They compromise our honor and our dignity
and dare we utter a single word of protest against the injustice, we are called
terrorists. This is compounded injustice. And the United Nations insistence
to convict the victims and support the aggressors constitutes a serious
precedence which shows the extent of injustice that has been allowed to take
root in this land. ...
What is your relationship with the Islamic movements in various regions of
the world like Chechnya and Kashmir and other Arab countries?
Cooperation for the sake of truth and righteousness is demanded from Muslims.
A Muslim should do his utmost to cooperate with his fellow Muslims. But Allah
says of cooperation that it is not absolute for there is cooperation to do
good, and there is cooperation to commit aggression and act unjustly. A Muslim
is supposed to give his fellow Muslim guidance and support. He (Allah) said
"Stand by your brother be he oppressor or oppressed." When asked how were they
to stand by him if he were the oppressor, He answered them, saying "by giving
him guidance and counsel." It all goes to say that Muslims should cooperate
with one another and should be supportive of one another, and they should
promote righteousness and mercy. They should all unite in the fight against
polytheism and they should pool all their resources and their energy to fight
the Americans and the Zionists and those with them. They should, however,
avoid side fronts and rise over the small problems for these are less
detrimental. Their fight should be directed against unbelief and unbelievers.
We heard your message to the American government and later your message to
the European governments who participated in the occupation of the Gulf. Is it
possible for you to address the people of these countries?
As we have already said, our call is the call of Islam that was revealed to
Mohammed. It is a call to all mankind. We have been entrusted with good cause
to follow in the footsteps of the Messenger and to communicate his message to
all nations. It is an invitation that we extend to all the nations to embrace
Islam, the religion that calls for justice, mercy and fraternity among all
nations, not differentiating between black and white or between red and yellow
except with respect to their devotedness. All people who worship Allah, not
each other, are equal before Him. We are entrusted to spread this message and
to extend that call to all the people. We, nonetheless, fight against their
governments and all those who approve of the injustice they practice against
us. We fight the governments that are bent on attacking our religion and on
stealing our wealth and on hurting our feelings. And as I have mentioned
before, we fight them, and those who are part of their rule are judged in the
same manner. ...
In your last statement, there was a strong message to the American
government in particular. What message do you have for the European
governments and the West in general?
Praise be Allah and prayers and peace upon Mohammed. With respect to the
Western governments that participated in the attack on the land of the two Holy
Mosques regarding it as ownerless, and in the siege against the Muslim people
of Iraq, we have nothing new to add to the previous message. What prompted us
to address the American government in particular is the fact that it is on the
head of the Western and the crusading forces in their fight against Islam and
against Muslims. The two explosions that took place in Riyadh and in Khobar
recently were but a clear and powerful signal to the governments of the
countries which willingly participated in the aggression against our countries
and our lives and our sacrosanct symbols. It might be beneficial to mention
that some of those countries have begun to move towards independence from the
American government with respect to the enmity that it continues to show
towards the Muslim people. We only hope that they will continue to move in
that direction, away from the oppressive forces that are fighting against our
countries. We however, differentiate between the western government and the
people of the West. If the people have elected those governments in the latest
elections, it is because they have fallen prey to the Western media which
portray things contrary to what they really are. And while the slogans raised
by those regimes call for humanity, justice, and peace, the behavior of their
governments is completely the opposite. It is not enough for their people to
show pain when they see our children being killed in Israeli raids launched by
American planes, nor does this serve the purpose. What they ought to do is
change their governments which attack our countries. The hostility that
America continues to express against the Muslim people has given rise to
feelings of animosity on the part of Muslims against America and against the
West in general. Those feelings of animosity have produced a change in the
behavior of some crushed and subdued groups who, instead of fighting the
Americans inside the Muslim countries, went on to fight them inside the United
States of America itself.
The Western regimes and the government of the United States of America bear the
blame for what might happen. If their people do not wish to be harmed inside
their very own countries, they should seek to elect governments that are truly
representative of them and that can protect their interests. ...
The enmity between us and the Jews goes far back in time and is deep rooted.
There is no question that war between the two of us is inevitable. For this
reason it is not in the interest of Western governments to expose the interests
of their people to all kinds of retaliation for almost nothing. It is hoped
that people of those countries will initiate a positive move and force their
governments not to act on behalf of other states and other sects. This is what
we have to say and we pray to Allah to preserve the nation of Islam and to help
them drive their enemies out of their land.
American politicians have painted a distorted picture of Islam, of Muslims
and of Islamic fighters. We would like you to give us the true picture that
clarifies your viewpoint ... .
The leaders in America and in other countries as well have fallen victim to
Jewish Zionist blackmail. They have mobilized their people against Islam and
against Muslims. These are portrayed in such a manner as to drive people to
rally against them. The truth is that the whole Muslim world is the victim of
international terrorism, engineered by America at the United Nations. We are a
nation whose sacred symbols have been looted and whose wealth and resources
have been plundered. It is normal for us to react against the forces that
invade our land and occupy it ... .
Quite a number of Muslim countries have seen the rise of militant movements
whose purpose is to stand up in the face of the pressure exerted on the people
by their own governments and other governments. Such as is the case in Egypt
and Libya and North Africa and Algiers and such as was the case in Syria and in
Yemen. There are also other militant groups currently engaged in the fight
against the unbelievers and the crusaders as is the case in Kashmir and
Chechnya and Bosnia and the African horn. Is there any message you wish to
convey to our brothers who are fighting in various parts of the Islamic
... Tell the Muslims everywhere that the vanguards of the warriors who are
fighting the enemies of Islam belong to them and the young fighters are their
sons. Tell them that the nation is bent on fighting the enemies of Islam.
Once again, I have to stress the necessity of focusing on the Americans and the
Jews for they represent the spearhead with which the members of our religion
have been slaughtered. Any effort directed against America and the Jews yields
positive and direct results - Allah willing. It is far better for anyone to
kill a single American soldier than to squander his efforts on other
|This too answers the claims
of the West and of the secular people in the Arab world. They claim that this
blessed awakening and the people reverting to Islam are due to economic
factors. This is not so. It is rather a grace from Allah, a desire to embrace
the religion of Allah. And this is not surprising. When the holy war called,
thousands of young men from the Arab Peninsula and other countries answered the
call and they came from wealthy backgrounds. Hundreds of them were killed in
Afghanistan and in Bosnia and in Chechnya. |
You have been described as the world's most wanted man, and there is word
that the American government intends to put a price on your head - in the
millions - when you are captured. Do you think they will do that? And does it
We do not care what the Americans believe. What we care for is to please
Allah. Americans heap accusations on whoever stands for his religion or his
rights or his wealth. ... It does not scare us that they have put a price on my
head. We as Muslims believe that our years on this earth are finite and
predetermined. If the whole world gets together to kill us before it is our
time to go, they will not succeed. We also believe that livelihoods are
preordained. So no matter how much pressure American puts on the regime in
Riyadh to freeze our assets and to forbid people from contributing to this
great cause, we shall still have Allah to take care of us; livelihood is sent
by Allah; we shall not want. ...
Mr. bin Laden, you have issued a fatwah calling on Muslims to kill Americans
where they can, when they can. Is that directed at all Americans, just the
American military, just the Americans in Saudi Arabia?
Allah has ordered us to glorify the truth and to defend Muslim land, especially
the Arab peninsula ... against the unbelievers. After World War II, the
Americans grew more unfair and more oppressive towards people in general and
Muslims in particular. ... The Americans started it and retaliation and
punishment should be carried out following the principle of reciprocity,
especially when women and children are involved. Through history, American has
not been known to differentiate between the military and the civilians or
between men and women or adults and children. Those who threw atomic bombs and
used the weapons of mass destruction against Nagasaki and Hiroshima were the
Americans. Can the bombs differentiate between military and women and infants
and children? America has no religion that can deter her from exterminating
whole peoples. Your position against Muslims in Palestine is despicable and
disgraceful. America has no shame. ... We believe that the worst thieves in
the world today and the worst terrorists are the Americans. Nothing could stop
you except perhaps retaliation in kind. We do not have to differentiate
between military or civilian. As far as we are concerned, they are all
targets, and this is what the fatwah says ... . The fatwah is general
(comprehensive) and it includes all those who participate in, or help the
Jewish occupiers in killing Muslims.
Ramzi Yousef was a follower of yours. Do you remember him and did you know
After the explosion that took place in the World Trade Center, Ramzi Yousef
became a well known Muslim figure. Muslims have come to know him.
Unfortunately, I did not know him before this incident. I of course remember
who he is. He is a Muslim who wanted to protect his religion jealously from
the oppression practiced by America against Islam. He acted with zeal to make
the Americans understand that their government was attacking Muslims in order
to safeguard the American-Jewish interests. ...
Wali Khan Amin Shah was captured in Manila. American authorities believe he
was working for you, funded by you, setting up training camps there and part of
his plan was to plan out the assassination or the attempted assassination of
President Clinton during his trip to Manila.
Wali Khan is a Muslim young man; his nickname in Afghanistan was the Lion. He
was among the most courageous Muslim young men. He was a close friend and we
used to fight from the same trenches in Afghanistan. We fought many battles
against the Russians until they were defeated and put to shame and had to leave
the country in disgrace. As to what you said about him working for me, I have
nothing to say. We are all together in this; we all work for Allah and our
reward comes from him. As to what you said about the attempt to assassinate
President Clinton, it is not surprising. What do you expect from people
attacked by Clinton, whose sons and mothers have been killed by Clinton? Do
you expect anything but treatment by reciprocity?
The federal government in the US. is still investigating their suspicions
that you ordered and funded the attack on the US military in Al Khobar and
We have roused the nation and the Muslim people and we have communicated to
them the fatwahs of our learned scholars who the Saudi government has thrown in
jail in order to please the American government for which they are agents. ...
We have communicated their fatwahs and stirred the nation to drive out the
enemy who has occupied our land and usurped our country and suppressed our
people and to rid the land of the two Holy Mosques from their presence. Among
the young men who responded to our call are Khalid Al Said and Abdul Azeez
Al... and Mahmud Al Hadi and Muslih Al Shamrani. We hope Allah receives them
as holy martyrs. They have raised the nation's head high and washed away a
great part of the shame that has enveloped us as a result of the weakness of
the Saudi government and its complicity with the American government ... . Yes,
we have instigated and they have responded. We hope Allah grants their
You've been painted in America as a terrorist leader. To your followers,
you are a hero. How do you see yourself?
As I have said, we are not interested in what America says. We do not care.
We view ourselves and our brothers like everyone else. Allah created us to
worship Him and to follow in his footsteps and to be guided by His Book. I am
one of the servants of Allah and I obey his orders. Among those is the order
to fight for the word of Allah ... and to fight until the Americans are driven
out of all the Islamic countries.
No one expected the mujahedeen to beat the Russians in Afghanistan. It came
as a surprise to everyone. What do you see as the future of American
involvement in the Middle East, in taking on groups like this?
... Allah has granted the Muslim people and the Afghani mujahedeen, and those
with them, the opportunity to fight the Russians and the Soviet Union. ... They
were defeated by Allah and were wiped out. There is a lesson here. The Soviet
Union entered Afghanistan late in December of '79. The flag of the Soviet
Union was folded once and for all on the 25th of December just 10
years later. It was thrown in the waste basket. Gone was the Soviet union
forever. We are certain that we shall - with the grace of Allah - prevail over
the Americans and over the Jews, as the Messenger of Allah promised us in an
authentic prophetic tradition when He said the Hour of Resurrection shall not
come before Muslims fight Jews and before Jews hide behind trees and behind
We are certain - with the grace of Allah - that we shall prevail over the Jews
and over those fighting with them. Today however, our battle against the
Americans is far greater than our battle was against the Russians. Americans
have committed unprecedented stupidity. They have attacked Islam and its most
significant sacrosanct symbols ... . We anticipate a black future for America.
Instead of remaining United States, it shall end up separated states and shall
have to carry the bodies of its sons back to America.
What do you see as the future of the Saudi royal family and their
involvement with America and the US military?
History has the answer to your question. The fate of any government which
sells the interests of its own people and, betrays the nation and commits
offenses which furnish grounds for expulsion from Islam, is known. We expect
for the ruler of Riyadh the same fate as the Shah of Iran. We anticipate this
to happen to him and to the influential people who stand by him and who have
sided with the Jews and the Christians giving them free reign over the land of
the two Holy Mosques. These are grave offenses that are grounds for expulsion
from the faith. They shall all be wiped out. ...
Describe the situation when your men took down the American forces in
After our victory in Afghanistan and the defeat of the oppressors who had
killed millions of Muslims, the legend about the invincibility of the
superpowers vanished. Our boys no longer viewed America as a superpower. So,
when they left Afghanistan, they went to Somalia and prepared themselves
carefully for a long war. They had thought that the Americans were like the
Russians, so they trained and prepared. They were stunned when they discovered
how low was the morale of the American soldier. America had entered with
30,000 soldiers in addition to thousands of soldiers from different countries
in the world. ... As I said, our boys were shocked by the low morale of the
American soldier and they realized that the American soldier was just a paper
tiger. He was unable to endure the strikes that were dealt to his army, so he
fled, and America had to stop all its bragging and all that noise it was making
in the press after the Gulf War in which it destroyed the infrastructure and
the milk and dairy industry that was vital for the infants and the children and
the civilians and blew up dams which were necessary for the crops people grew
to feed their families. Proud of this destruction, America assumed the titles
of world leader and master of the new world order. After a few blows, it
forgot all about those titles and rushed out of Somalia in shame and disgrace,
dragging the bodies of its soldiers. America stopped calling itself world
leader and master of the new world order, and its politicians realized that
those titles were too big for them and that they were unworthy of them. I was
in Sudan when this happened. I was very happy to learn of that great defeat
that America suffered, so was every Muslim. ...
Many Americans believe that fighting army to army like what happened in
Afghanistan is heroic for either army. But sending off bombs, killing
civilians like in the World Trade Center is terrorism.
... After our victory over the Russians in Afghanistan, the international and
the American mass media conducted fierce campaigns against us ... . They
called us terrorists even before the mujahedeen had committed any act of
terrorism against the real terrorists who are the Americans. On the other
hand, we say that American politics and their religion do not believe in
differentiating between civilians and military, between infants and animals, or
among any human groups. ...
Our mothers and daughters and sons are slaughtered every day with the approval
of America and its support. And, while America blocks the entry of weapons
into Islamic countries, it provides the Israelis with a continuous supply of
arms allowing them thus to kill and massacre more Muslims. Your religion does
not forbid you from committing such acts, so you have no right to object to any
response or retaliation that reciprocates your own actions. But, and in spite
of this, our retaliation is directed primarily against the soldiers only and
against those standing by them. Our religion forbids us from killing innocent
people such as women and children. This, however, does not apply to women
fighters. A woman who puts herself in the same trench with men, gets what they
The American people, by and large, do not know the name bin Laden, but they
soon likely will. Do you have a message for the American people?
I say to them that they have put themselves at the mercy of a disloyal
government, and this is most evident in Clinton's administration ... . We
believe that this administration represents Israel inside America. Take the
sensitive ministries such as the Ministry of Exterior and the Ministry of
Defense and the CIA, you will find that the Jews have the upper hand in them.
They make use of America to further their plans for the world, especially the
Islamic world. American presence in the Gulf provides support to the Jews and
protects their rear. And while millions of Americans are homeless and
destitute and live in abject poverty, their government is busy occupying our
land and building new settlements and helping Israel build new settlements in
the point of departure for our Prophet's midnight journey to the seven heavens.
America throws her own sons in the land of the two Holy Mosques for the sake of
protecting Jewish interests. ...
The American government is leading the country towards hell. ... We say to the
Americans as people and to American mothers, if they cherish their lives and if
they cherish their sons, they must elect an American patriotic government that
caters to their interests not the interests of the Jews. If the present
injustice continues with the wave of national consciousness, it will inevitably
move the battle to American soil, just as Ramzi Yousef and others have done.
This is my message to the American people. I urge them to find a serious
administration that acts in their interest and does not attack people and
violate their honor and pilfer their wealth. ...
In America, we have a figure from history from 1897 named Teddy Roosevelt. He
was a wealthy man, who grew up in a privileged situation and who fought on the
front lines. He put together his own men - hand chose them - and went to
battle. You are like the Middle East version of Teddy Roosevelt.
I am one of the servants of Allah. We do our duty of fighting for the sake of
the religion of Allah. It is also our duty to send a call to all the people of
the world to enjoy this great light and to embrace Islam and experience the
happiness in Islam. Our primary mission is nothing but the furthering of this
religion. ... Let not the West be taken in by those who say that Muslims choose
nothing but slaughtering. Their brothers in East Europe, in Turkey and in
Albania have been guided by Allah to submit to Islam and to experience the
bliss of Islam. Unlike those, the European and the American people and some of
the Arabs are under the influence of Jewish media. ...