Osama Praises Arab Spring in Newly Released Message

Al-Qaeda releases recording made weeks before death
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted May 19, 2011 2:33 AM CDT
This image from video provided by the SITE Intelligence Group shows the image displayed during a posthumous audio message from slain al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden.   (AP Photo/SITE Intelligence Group)

(Newser) – Dead terror kingpin Osama bin Laden is full of praise for the revolutions sweeping the Arab world in a recording released posthumously by al-Qaeda. In the 12-minute message, bin Laden hails the people of Egypt and Tunisia for ridding themselves of tyrants and predicts that " the winds of change will envelope the entire Muslim world," Reuters reports.

Bin Laden does not directly threaten the West in the new recording, although he says "the Jews have become scared" by the Arab unrest. The video message released to jihadist websites contains only an audio track and an old photo of bin Laden, suggesting that al-Qaeda decided to upload it quickly instead of editing it, the Guardian notes. Intelligence officials aren't sure whether more messages are in the pipeline or if this is bin Laden's final sermon.

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