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Al Qaeda's No. 2 says end of West imminent, video shows

  • Story Highlights
  • Ayman al-Zawahiri appears in videotape Wednesday similar to "fireside chat"
  • He says that the "enemy" is trying to forestall the inevitable
  • He urges Muslims across the globe to fight the West
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(CNN) -- In a newly released videotaped message similar to a "fireside chat," al Qaeda's second-in-command issues advice and directives for the Muslim world, terrorism expert Laura Mansfield said Wednesday.


Alman al-Zawahiri urges Muslims around the world to continue their fight against the West.

In the one-hour, 34-minute video, titled "The Advice of One Concerned," Ayman al-Zawahiri includes clips from other videos and news broadcasts, including one from al-Furqan, the video production arm of the Islamic State of Iraq, according to Mansfield, who obtained the video.

Al-Zawahiri says in the message that the defeat of the West is imminent, and that "the enemy" is trying to forestall the inevitable, Mansfield said.

"The good omens of the new dawn of victory have begun to loom on the horizon, with Allah's permission and will," he says.

"And the stage preceding victory is normally, in the history of nations, the stage in which there is most seen an increase in conspiracies, plots and inciting of discord in an attempt by the enemy, who has begun to see his defeat approach, to push back and delay the defeat as much as he can."

Al-Zawahiri does not reference the recent terrorism incidents in the United Kingdom in the video.

Mansfield said it appears to be more of a "state of the ummah [community]" style of address "intended to try and provide advice to the Muslim world in a manner similar to the 'fireside chat.' "

Al-Zawahiri advises people in Iraq and the Palestinian territory, Mansfield said, and renews his call for young men to join the jihad in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Included is a video clip of the late Sheikh Abdullah Azzam -- an extremist in Afghanistan during the Soviet occupation -- reminding Muslims that jihad is their responsibility.

Al-Zawahiri also rebukes Fatah for battling Hamas in the Palestinian territory, telling party members to "return to your religion, your Islam, your honor and your Arabness."

Last month, al-Zawahiri, in an audiotaped message posted on several Islamist Web sites, voiced his support for Hamas leaders who maintain control of Gaza after a split with Fatah, a more moderate Palestinian faction.

"We say to you, now that you are in control of Gaza, you should remember two things: One is that being in power is not a goal in itself, but the goal is, rather, to implement the rule of Allah," al-Zawahiri said in that audiotape, according to a CNN translation.

"Two, this control is incomplete and unstable, for the [Israeli] plans are being made to invade Gaza. Unite with your mujahedeen brothers in Palestine and do not stir up problems with them.

"Unite your ranks with all of the mujahedeen in the world for the upcoming battle [of Gaza] that I expect the Egyptians and Saudis to participate in."

The audiotaped message was a reversal of al-Zawahiri's previous criticism of Hamas, issued after its leaders agreed to form a unity government with Fatah leaders.

Hamas fighters wrested control of Gaza from Fatah security forces two weeks ago, prompting Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, based in the West Bank, to replace the Hamas leadership with an emergency government.

Since then, the United States, the European Union and Israel have agreed to release funds to the new Palestinian government. The money had been frozen after Hamas won legislative elections last year. E-mail to a friend E-mail to a friend

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