The following is an edited transcript of an alleged al Qaeda videotape acquired exclusively by ABC News:
Four years after the blessed raids on New York and Washington, we find the people of the West continuing to speculate about the causes and objectives which lie behind those historic events and subsequent developments. We find them in disagreement over the nature of the people who carry out operations like those on September 11th, March 11th and July 7th, the nature of their motives and the nature of the demands they harbor, if any.
And most crucially, and as a result of their speculation and disagreement, we find them uncertain about which steps or actions they must take to achieve the restoration of the security they once enjoyed.
We wish to state at the outset that we see no acceptable excuse for this continuing uncertainty, especially since the mujahedeen have been unambiguous in stating, in stating their methodology, objectives and the reasons for their armed struggle against the crusaders and they have not hidden anything. Rather, it is the Western governments and their… mass media who have chosen to … by disregarding the facts or even intentionally muddying the waters.
Allah is our witness that the numerous audio and videotapes issued by Sheik Osama bin Laden, Dr. Ayman al-Zawahiri, and the other leaders of the jihad have not been released merely to dispel the rumors of their death, or, as the Americans once ridiculously claimed, to send messages to their followers. No, these communiqués have been released to explain and propound the nature and goals of the worldwide jihad against America and the crusaders and convey our legitimate demands to friend and foe alike, so that the former may join us on this honorable and blessed path, and so the latter may acknowledge his crimes, abandon the actions and behavior which have made him subject to the wrath of God and man and take the necessary steps to restore his erstwhile security.
Our message, therefore, is crystal clear and has been made available to all who wish to know, to all who wish to know the truth. The steps which America and its crusader allies must take to restore the security and ensure their safety from attack have been set out in detail, but they have chosen the path which leads only to disaster. They have chosen the path of the arrogant and proud, the path that the nations who Allah destroyed for their unbelief and rebellion against his laws. ... They have chosen… the path to disgrace in this life and punishment in the afterlife.
People of America, Britain and the West, yours is a futile fight, because you are not only following a false religion, but compounding that crime by waging war against the truth and its people, even though Allah has promised the believers ultimate victory in this life and the next and warned the nonbelievers of defeat and humiliation in this life and everlasting punishment hereafter.