- KABUL, November 9 - Osama
bin Laden has said that "we have chemical and nuclear weapons as a
deterrent and if America used them against us we reserve the right to use
- He said this in a special interview with Hamid Mir, the
editor of Ausaf, for Dawn and Ausaf, at an undisclosed location near Kabul.
- This was the first interview given by Osama to any journalist
after the September 11 attacks in New York and Washington.
- The correspondent was taken blindfolded in a jeep from
Kabul on the night of Nov 7 to a place where it was extremely cold and
one could hear the sound of anti-aircraft guns firing away. After a wait
of some time , Osama arrived with about a dozen bodyguards and Dr Ayman
Al-Zuwahiri and answered questions.
- Hamid Mir: After American bombing (began) on Afghanistan
on Oct 7, you told the Al-Jazeera TV that the Sept 11 attacks had been
carried out by some Muslims. How did you know they were Muslims ?
- Osama bin Laden: The Americans themselves released a
list of the suspects of the Sept 11 attacks, saying that the persons named
were involved in the attacks. They were all Muslims, of whom 15 belonged
to Saudi Arabia, two were from the UAE and one from Egypt. According to
the information I have, they were all passengers.Fateha was held for them
in their homes. But America said they were hijackers.
- HM: In your statement of Oct 7, you expressed satisfaction
over the Sept 11 attacks, although a large number of innocent people perished
in them, hundreds among them were Muslims. Can you justify the killing
of innocent men in the light of Islamic teachings ?
- OBL: This is a major point in jurisprudence. In my view,
if an enemy occupies a Muslim territory and uses common people as human
shield, then it is permitted to attack that enemy. For instance, if bandits
barge into a home and hold a child hostage, then the child's father can
attack the bandits and in that attack even the child may get hurt.
- America and its allies are massacring us in Palestine,
Chechenya, Kashmir and Iraq. The Muslims have the right to attack America
in reprisal. The Islamic Shariat says Muslims should not live in the land
of the infidel for long. The Sept 11 attacks were not targeted at women
and children. The real targets were America's icons of military and economic
- The Holy Prophet (peace be upon him) was against killing
women and children. When he saw a dead woman during a war, he asked why
was she killed? If a child is above 13 and wields a weapon against Muslims,
then it is permitted to kill him.
- The American people should remember that they pay taxes
to their government, they elect their president, their government manufactures
arms and gives them to Israel and Israel uses them to massacre Palestinians.
The American Congress endorses all government measures and this proves
that the entire America is responsible for the atrocities perpetrated against
Muslims. The entire America, because they elect the Congress.
- I ask the American people to force their government to
give up anti-Muslim policies. The American people had risen against their
government's war in Vietnam. They must do the same today. The American
people should stop the massacre of Muslims by their government.
- HM: Can it be said that you are against the American
government, not the American people ?
- OBL: Yes! We are carrying on the mission of our Prophet,
Muhammad (peace be upon him). The mission is to spread the word of God,
not to indulge massacring people. We ourselves are the target of killings,
destruction and atrocities. We are only defending ourselves. This is defensive
Jihad. We want to defend our people and our land. That is why I say that
if we don't get security, the Americans, too would not get security.
- This is a simple formula that even an American child
can understand. This is the formula of live and let live.
- HM: The head of Egypt's Jamia Al-Azhar has issued a fatwa
(edict) against you, saying that the views and beliefs of Osama bin Laden
have nothing to do with Islam. What do you have to say about that ?
- OBL: The fatwa of any official Aalim has no value for
me. History is full of such Ulema who justify Riba, who justify the occupation
of Palestine by the Jews, who justify the presence of American troops around
Harmain Sharifain. These people support the infidels for their personal
gain.The true Ulema support the Jihad against America. Tell me if Indian
forces invaded Pakistan what would you do? The Israeli forces occupy our
land and the American troops are on our territory. We have no other option
but to launch Jihad.
- HM: Some Western media claim that you are trying to acquire
chemical and nuclear weapons. How much truth is there in such reports?
- OBL: I heard the speech of American President Bush yesterday
. He was scaring the European countries that Osama wanted to attack with
weapons of mass destruction. I wish to declare that if America used chemical
or nuclear weapons against us, then we may retort with chemical and nuclear
weapons. We have the weapons as deterrent.
- HM: Where did you get these weapons from ?
- OBL: Go to the next question.
- HM: Demonstrations are being held in many European countries
against American attacks on Afghanistan. Thousands of the protesters were
non-Muslims. What is your opinion about those non-Muslim protesters ?
- OBL: There are many innocent and good-hearted people
in the West. American media instigates them against Muslims. However, some
good-hearted people are protesting against American attacks because human
nature abhors injustice.
- The Muslims were massacred under the UN patronage in
Bosnia. I am ware that some officers of the State Department had resigned
in protest. Many years ago the US ambassador in Egypt had resigned in protest
against the policies of President Jimmy Carter. Nice and civilized are
everywhere. The Jewish lobby has taken America and the West hostage.
- HM: Some people say that war is no solution to any issue.
Do you think that some political formula could be found to stop the present
- OBL: You should put this question to those who have started
this war. We are only defending ourselves.
- HM: If America got out of Saudi Arabia and the Al-Aqsa
mosque was liberated, would you then present yourself for trial in some
Muslim country ?
- OBL: Only Afghanistan is an Islamic country. Pakistan
follows the English law. I don't consider Saudi Arabia an Islamic country.
If the Americans have charges against me, we too have a charge sheet against
- HM: Pakistan government decided to cooperate with America
after Sept 11, which you don't consider right. What do you think Pakistan
should have done but to cooperate with America ?
- OBL: The government of Pakistan should have the wishes
of the people in view. It should not have surrendered to the unjustified
demands of America. America does not have solid proof against us. It just
has some surmises. It is unjust to start bombing on the basis of those
- HM: Had America decided to attack Pakistan with the help
of India and Israel, what would have we done ?
- OBL: What has America achieved by attacking Afghanistan
? We will not leave the Pakistani people and the Pakistani territory at
- We will defend Pakistan. But we have been disappointed
by Gen Pervez Musharraf. He says that the majority is with him. I say the
majority is against him.
- Bush has used the word crusade. This is a crusade declared
by Bush. It is no wisdom to barter off blood of Afghan brethren to improve
Pakistan's economy. He will be punished by the Pakistani people and Allah.
- Right now a great war of Islamic history is being fought
in Afghanistan. All the big powers are united against Muslims. It is 'sawab'
to participate in this war.
- HM: A French newspaper has claimed that you had kidney
problem and had secretly gone to Dubai for treatment last year. Is that
- OBL: My kidneys are all right. I did not go to Dubai
last year. One British newspaper has published an imaginary interview with
Islamabad dateline with one of my sons who lives in Saudi Arabia. All this
- HM: Is it correct that a daughter of Mulla Omar is your
wife or your daughter is Mulla Omar's wife ?
- OBL: (Laughs). All my wives are Arabs (and all my daughters
are married to Arab Mujahideen). I have spiritual relationship with Mulla
Omar. He is a great and brave Muslim of this age. He does not fear anyone
but Allah. He is not under any personal relationship or obligation to me.
He is only discharging his religious duty. I, too, have not chosen this
life out of any personal consideration.