CBS Terrorist Update
Dan Rather…..Darrell Hammond
[ dissolve to video of Osama bin Laden centered between Shaykh al Ghamdi and ]
[ text scrolls upward awkwardly, as Translator reads: ]
Dan Rather: Good evening. This is a CBS News Special Report: The War on Terror. Dan Rather reporting. Here are the latest developments at this hour: moments ago, the FBI released what it calls a clearer audio-enhanced version of the Osama bin Laden videotape, first made public two days ago. The newly-translated version adds chilling details to what we already know about the events of September 11th, and, according to the FBI, removes any doubt as to bin Laden’s role. in the portion you are about to see, with the voice of a translator added, bin Laden is seen describing the moment the hijackers first learned from ringleaders the full nature of the plot.
I received a call on my cell-phone from Mohammed Atta. “Osama”, he said, “I just told the men the rest of the plan, and they want to talk to you. They have some suggestions for an alternate plan.”
“What about this,” one of them asked. Instead of wrecking the planes, we buzz the city several times, so that the non-believers will be filled with fear. Then we fly straight to Kabul.”
I told them my plan was better.
“Alright, how about this,” they said.
“We hijack the planes and fly them to Somalia for ransom. Then truly will the infidels know fear, from their greatest cities to their smallest village.”
“Ransom?” I replied. “This plan is not about money. We don’t want money.”
“But wait, they said, “aren’t you the one who’s always complaining about having to pay for everything?”
“Not anymore,” I said. “And anyway, how does your plan grant you the martyrdom you seek? Do you not crave martyrdom?”
“Of course we hunger for martyrdom,” they answered, “but not necessarily at this time. Some of us feel that if we put off our martyrdom for a few months, a year, whatever, when it finally does come, we will appreciate it more.”
“I still like my plan,” I said. “And mine grants you instant martyrdom.”
“What about this,” they said. “We hijack the planes to Yemen, then exchange the hostages for our brothers held in Israeli prisons. Then, at that point, any of our group who feel they still crave martyrdom could simply swallow some Anthrax spores, or lie down on railroad tracks.”
“There are no railroads in Yemen,” I pointed out.
“Fine, they can step on some land mines, or run their jeeps with the garage door shut, whatever. The point is, they can still have martyrdom. And besides, many scholars of the Koran have said that leading a long full life of service to Islam is, in a sense, the highest form of martyrdom.”
“I don’t know where you got that,” I told them. “I have never heard that. Besides, we have already begun my plan. Let’s just see it through.”
“But we can always do your plan,” they said.
“Why not try our plan, and then we can try yours later, or someone else can try it. It doesn’t even have to be us.”
I explained to them, that while I appreciated their suggestions, and they were well thought out, I still preferred my plan. I wished them good luck, and told them I would be cheering them on, and that in about thirty years I hope to meet them in Paradise.
“Alright, Osama, fine. We’ll stick wih your plan. But while we’re doing our part, just out of curiosity,” they asked – and this is when your name came up, Shaykh – “How are you and “Fat Boy” contributing to Jihad today? No, seriously, really, how do you and “Tubby” plan to smite the non-believers?”
I explained that you have a thyroid condition, and that their remark was uncalled for. “No, truly,” they said, “we want to know, what does “Tons-of-Fun have in mind today to bring the infidel to his knees. Oh no, let us guess. He maybe won’t eat his tenth platter of lamb kabob.” Forgive me, Shaykh. This was the truth of our conversation.
Shaykh Al Ghamdi:
Allah be praised. What happened next?
They complained for a few minutes about some back-pay they claimed I owed them. Then one of them got on the phone and said, “Osama, I have one last request. Why don’t you and “The Blimp” take your personal copies of the Koran, and all your little fatwas, roll them up in a nice tube, stuff them up (inaudible) and set fire to them? You can show the whole thing on Al Jazeera.”
Then they hung up.
Shaykh Al Ghamdi:
Dan Rather: Just a portion of this disturbing document. As a programming note, CBS News will be broadcasting this tape in its entirety and throughout the week on “The Early Show with Bryant Gumbel and Jane Clayson”. And, in the meantime, in case anybody cares, I still don’t have anthrax – yet. But I’ll be here to bring you any new developments the moment we get them. For now, this is the CBS Evening News, Dan Rather reporting, saying, “Live, from New York, it’s Saturday Night.”