Two other sources said the information was actually delivered to al-Zarqawi by Ayman al-Zawahiri, bin Laden's deputy, but that the message was clearly from bin Laden. The communications did not mention any specific targets. And, the official cautioned: "Let's face it. Zarqawi has his hands full in Iraq right now." Indeed, one of his top lieutenants had been captured the week before.
But senior officials say it was a significant discovery -- and a clear message for al-Zarqawi to attack inside the United States.
A month later, Jordan's state security court sentenced him in absentia to 15 years in jail for a plot to attack the kingdom's embassy in Baghdad.
Meanwhile, al-Zarqawi stepped up his efforts to fight coalition forces in Iraq. In an audiotape allegedly from him, he called for more suicide attacks on U.S. forces and vowed not to let President Bush enjoy "peace of mind."