Tuesday, July 11, 2006



An edit of a story in The Asia Times :

Osama Bin Laden is ill and invisible, but five years after September 11, 2001, his al-Qaeda movement has become the fulcrum of a global, Islamic resistance against the United States.

Asia Times Online has learned from an operative close to the al-Qaeda leadership that bin Laden languishes on a dialysis machine, in rapidly declining health.

"Sheikh [Osama] was in a poor condition when my father last visited," said the operative, who uses the name "Abdullah". Abdullah's father, known as Sheikh Ibrahim, is number two after Tahir Yuldeshev in the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IUM), a group closely allied with al-Qaeda and the Taliban, and operating in Afghanistan, Uzbekistan and Pakistan.

Sheikh Ibrahim's meeting with bin Laden took place "a few weeks ago", Abdullah told Asia Times Online in an interview at the end of June in a northern Pakistani city.

"He [bin Laden] asked all of us to pray for his health. For the past many months he has been on dialysis and just cannot move. My father never told me where he was when he met Osama ... but he was worried about his fast-waning health."

Nevertheless, said Abdullah, the al-Qaeda leadership remains in Afghanistan and still serves as the nucleus of the movement.

"Dr Ayman al-Zawahiri [bin Laden's number two] is very active in Afghanistan and controlling affairs. Most of the Arab fighters left Afghanistan after the US invasion of Iraq and many went there to fight. But the main leadership of al-Qaeda continued to stay in Afghanistan," Abdullah said.

He confirmed Asia Times Online reports that bin Laden had been short of funds, hampering al-Qaeda operations. Still, Abdullah maintained that the al-Qaeda leadership would remain in Afghanistan despite all difficulties, because of the country's identification with Bilad-i-Khurasan - a land, Muslims believe, where Muslim armies will finally regroup and go to liberate the "land of Abraham" from the Anti-God (Dajal).

Abdullah also revealed that international players are aligning themselves with al-Qaeda and the Taliban in a global Islamic alliance to fight the US.

Go Here For The Full Story From The Asia Times