POLL: Bin Laden: Real or another CIA Hoax

See tape as boost for President

With his typical flair for drama, Osama Bin Laden inserted himself directly into the presidential election yesterday, and both parties believed it would boost President Bush's reelection hopes. Bin Laden popping up like a malignant jack-in-the-box four days before the balloting may bolster John Kerry's argument that Bush should have finished wiping out Al Qaeda before turning his attention to Iraq.But it also refocused the nation on terrorism, which polls show helps Bush. And it reminds voters of their horror on Sept. 11 and Bush's well-received response, as well as obliterating the recent flood of bad news for Bush.

"We want people to think 'terrorism' for the last four days," said a Bush-Cheney campaign official. "And anything that raises the issue in people's minds is good for us."

A senior GOP strategist added, "anything that makes people nervous about their personal safety helps Bush." He called it "a little gift," saying it helps the President but doesn't guarantee his re-election.

Halloween Tidings from the 'War on Terror'

Analysis - By Jim Lobe -- U.S. President George W Bush is fortunate indeed that so much of the electorate has already made up its mind on its vote next Tuesday, because this week's news from the ''war on terrorism'' has been unrelentingly bad.

While the apparently looting -- apparently right after last year's U.S.-led invasion -- of nearly 400 tonnes of high explosives from an enormous weapons cache south of Iraq's capital Baghdad dominated the media and the presidential campaign all week, other reports painted an equally dismal picture that tended to confirm Democratic charges of a misconceived and incompetent war and occupation.

A week that began with reports of the missing munitions and a high-level leak that claimed the Bush administration had passed up an early chance to assassinate or apprehend arch-terrorist leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi ended with the airing of a video-tape by arch-enemy Osama bin Laden, the first to surface in more than two years, as if to remind the U.S. public that Bush had not gotten him either ''dead or alive'', as the president had pledged shortly after the Sep. 11, 2001 attacks on New York and the Pentagon.

Bin Laden's dramatic appearance -- perhaps the long-feared ''October surprise'' that might yet determine Tuesday's electoral outcome -- immediately overshadowed both the munitions story and Friday's publication by Britain's premier medical journal, 'The Lancet', of a new study that estimated as many as 100,000 more Iraqis have died or been killed since the invasion than would otherwise have been expected, a number at least three times greater than other independent estimates put forward to date.

So what is the consensus around here? Is it real or is it memorex?
CRONKITE: What we just heard. So now the question is basically right now, how will this affect the election? And I have a feeling that it could tilt the election a bit. In fact, I'm a little inclined to think that Karl Rove, the political manager at the White House, who is a very clever man, he probably set up bin Laden to this thing.... (CNN, Larry King Live, 29 Oct 2004) Tongue in cheek? That it was said, says alot.

At first I couldn't figure out why bin Laden finnally claimed responsiblity and talked about the embarrassing (for Bush) goat telling story.

But this is Karl Rove - he has attacked his own man. In this case it learly shows bin Laden taking responsibility for the attacks. Ostensibly, now that he has done this the large undercurrent of truth seekers have no position anymore.

The highlighting of the embarrassing goat telling story I would guess is for more authenticity.


In an article in Atlantic Magazine, author Joshua Green recounts a particularly sardonic Rove manoeuvre in a 1996 race for the Alabama Supreme Court in which his candidate was losing.

So Rove had flyers printed up, Green writes, viciously attacking his own candidate and his family and then anonymously flung on voters' doorsteps, leaving voters with the logical conclusion that dirty Democrats were attacking the poor Republican.

The flummoxed Democrat didn't know how to react, seeing the futility of blaming the Republicans for attacking their own candidate. Rove's man won.

Rove is a man who, after all, once won a campaign by launching anonymous attacks on his own candidate, who, some believe, dispatched U.S. Vice-President Dick Cheney to Hawaii today to build the illusion of Republican strength on the island and force Democrats into defence.

This was the sticking point for me. A CIA tape mocking the president?

For Karl Rove that is the strategy - to throw conventional thought off the scent.

Victor Marchetti: "despite frequent suggestion that the CIA is a rogue elephant, the truth is that the agency functions at the direction of and in response to the office of the president. All of its major clandestine operations are carried out with the direct approval of or on direct orders from the White House. The CIA is a secret tool of the president - every president. And every president since Truman has lied to the American people in order to protect the agency. When lies have failed, it has been the duty of the CIA to take the blame for the president, thus protecting him. This is known in the business as "plausible denial."

The CIA, functioning as a secret instrument of the U.S. government and the presidency, has long misused and abused history and continues to do so. I first became concerned about this historical distortion in 1957, when I was a young officer in the Clandestine Services of the CIA.

One night, after work, I was walking down Constitution Avenue with a fellow officer, who previously had been a reporter for United Press.

"How are they ever going to know," he asked.

"Who? How is 'who' ever going to know what?" I asked.

"How are the American people ever going to know what the truth is? How are they going to know what the truth is about what we are doing and have done over the years?" he said. "We operate in secrecy, we deal in deception and disinformation, and then we burn our files. How will the historians ever be able to learn the complete truth about what we've done in these various operations, these operations that have had such a major impact on so many important events in history?"

I couldn't answer him, then. And I can't answer him now. I don't know how the American people will ever really know the truth about the many things that the CIA has been involved in. Or how they will ever know the truth about the great historical events of our times."

The tape is definitely not real. As a Muslim, I can understand what Bin Laden was saying. He had no reference to the Holy Month of Ramadan (which is unusual for Bin Laden). There is also the issue of confession for 9/11. Why after 4 years?

Is Bin Laden getting older or younger. I do not see any wrinkles on him. There is a table in front of him. Bin Laden always sits on the floor.

These are personal thoughts that I observed. Maybe I am wrong. But the timing of the tape is funny.
Reverend Blair
The timing is the most important part. It is important to remember that bin Laden wants Bush to win though. He's said so before because he feels Bush is incompetent and and boosting al Qaeda's cause.

That leaves this not depending on a conspiracy, or even the Bush camp having prior knowledge of the tape. It could be a simple case of success because of their own incompetence.

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