Friday, November 12, 2004

Steve Kroft 60 Minutes to Interview "Anonymous"

Finally Americans are going to get to know the mysterious circumstances surrounding Osama Bin Laden's odd pre-election message, in which the bloodthirsty terrorist addressed and appealed to all of us, ignoring President Bush. There was a reason. According to TheDrudgeReport:

"Osama bin Laden now has religious approval to use a nuclear device against Americans, says the former head of the CIA unit charged with tracking down the Saudi terrorist. The former agent, Michael Scheuer, speaks to Steve Kroft in his first television interview without disguise to be broadcast on 60 MINUTES Sunday, Nov. 14 (7:00-8:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network."

Photo via CBS (Above: Steve Kroft and formerly "Anonymous," Michael Scheuer)

"Scheuer was until recently known as the 'anonymous' author of two books critical of the West's response to bin Laden and al Qaeda, the most recent of which is titled Imperial Hubris: Why the West is Losing the War on Terror."

Of which, Publisher's Weekly said:

"It's unclear how, in an age when even office workers must sign confidentiality agreements, an alleged CIA Middle Eastern specialist has gotten permission to publish a sprawling, erudite book on the origins and present state of the 'war on terror.' (Michael Scheuer's) main point is that Arab antagonism to the West (and even non-fundamentalist Arab regimes' winking at terrorism) has its root in real grievances that have gone unaddressed by U.S. measures. The actions of the Saudis, and their U.S. supporters, come in for some hard criticism, as does the elevation of Northern Alliance warlords to de facto governors of Afghanistan. The author makes some challenging remarks regarding Israel ('Surely there can be no other historical example of a faraway, theocracy-in-all-but-name of only six million people that ultimately controls the extent and even the occurrence of an important portion of political discourse and national security debate in a country of 270-plus million people that prides itself on religious toleration, separation of church and state, and freedom of speech') while playing down the extent to which the Taliban itself was a corrupt theocratic regime. But his annotated compendia of battles and skirmishes won and lost by the U.S. and al-Qaeda are gripping, and his engagement with his subject has made him a pundit-in-demand."

Back to what Drudge says of the pundit-in-demand:

"No one in the West knows more about the Qaeda leader than Scheuer, who has tracked him since the mid-1980s. The CIA allowed him to write the books provided he remain anonymous, but now is allowing him to reveal himself for the first time on Sunday's broadcast; he formally leaves the Agency today (Ed Note: he means today, Friday, November 12).

"Even if bin Laden had a nuclear weapon, he probably wouldn't have used it for a lack of proper religious authority - authority he has now. '[Bin Laden] secured from a Saudi sheik ... a rather long treatise on the possibility of using nuclear weapons against the Americans,' says Scheuer. '[The treatise] found that he was perfectly within his rights to use them. Muslims argue that the United States is responsible for millions of dead Muslims around the world, so reciprocity would mean you could kill millions of Americans,' Scheuer tells Kroft.

"Scheuer says bin Laden was criticized by some Muslims for the 9/11 attack because he killed so many people without enough warning and before offering to help convert them to Islam. But now bin Laden has addressed the American people and given fair warning."

Now it all makes sense ...

"'They're intention is to end the war as soon as they can and to ratchet up the pain for the Americans until we get out of their region ... If they acquire the weapon, they will use it, whether it's chemical, biological or some sort of nuclear weapon,' says Scheuer."

Four words: unsecured Russian nuclear weapons.

"As the head of the CIA unit charged with tracking bin Laden from 1996 to 1999, Scheuer says he never had enough people to do the job right. He blames former CIA Director George Tenet."

"'One of the questions that should have been asked of Mr. Tenet was why were there always enough people for the public relations office, for the academic outreach office, for the diversity and multi-cultural office? All those things are admirable and necessary but none of them are protecting the American people from a foreign threat,' says Scheuer. And the threat posed by bin Laden is also underestimated, says Scheuer. 'I think our leaders over the last decade have done the American people a disservice ... continuing to characterize Osama bin Laden as a thug, as a gangster,' he says. 'Until we respect him, sir, we are going to die in numbers that are probably unnecessary, yes. He's a very, very talented man and a very worthy opponent,' he tells Kroft."


Anonymous said...

okay, i think that's enough for me--i'm out of here. forget a co-op in brooklyn; i'm buying citizenship on st. kitts! who will build a driftwood hut on the beach with me?

bookgirl from bk

The Corsair said...

I'll cosign on that plan. Beachside raves 24/7.