08 September 2007

The killers ask for a better chance to kill

From the 23 FEB 1998 al Qaeda release Jihad Against Jews and Crusaders - World Islamic Front Statement (FAS document archives):

Praise be to Allah, who revealed the Book, controls the clouds, defeats factionalism, and says in His Book: "But when the forbidden months are past, then fight and slay the pagans wherever ye find them, seize them, beleaguer them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem (of war)"; and peace be upon our Prophet, Muhammad Bin-'Abdallah, who said: I have been sent with the sword between my hands to ensure that no one but Allah is worshipped, Allah who put my livelihood under the shadow of my spear and who inflicts humiliation and scorn on those who disobey my orders.
Why intro with this? Simply, it is a statement from al Qaeda before the 07 AUG 1998 Kenya and Tanzania embassy bombings by al Qaeda. However it has an interest beyond that because the tone of it is highly assertive and confrontational. The selections used by al Qaeda to characterize their upcoming acts is one that looks to gain the favor of Allah by citation and by affiliation to seek to put forth justifications for the organization's activities.

This is much better then the extremely lengthy and run-on fatwa issued by stirring up the conflict in Kosovo by helping the KLA, as seen by the Assistant Director, Criminal Intelligence Directorate in Interpol in 2000(via GlobalSecurity document cache):
There might still be links between political/military Kosovar Albanian groups (especially the KLA) and Albanian organized crime. Of the almost 900 million DM which reached Kosovo between 1996 and 1999, half was thought to be illegal drug money. Legitimate fundraising activities for the Kosovo and the KLA could have been be used to launder drug money. In 1998, the U.S. State Department listed the KLA as a terrorist organization, indicating that it was financing its operations with money from the international heroin trade and loans from Islamic countries and individuals, among them allegedly Usama bin Laden. Another link to bin Laden is the fact that the brother of a leader in an Egyptian Djihad organization and also a military commander of Usama bin Laden, was leading an elite KLA unit during the Kosovo conflict. In 1998, the KLA was described as a key player in the drugs for arms business in 1998, "helping to transport 2 billion USD worth of drugs annually into Western Europe". The KLA and other Albanian groups seem to utilize a sophisticated network of accounts and companies to process funds. In 1998, Germany froze two bank accounts belonging to the "United Kosova" organization after it had been discovered that several hundred thousand dollars had been deposited into those accounts by a convicted Kosovar Albanian drug trafficker.
Somehow a rich man complaining about how other rich folks exploit folks while doing his own exploiting for his own reasons seems more than a bit disingenuous. Still, bin Laden's tone is very aggressive and confrontational, putting forth 'facts' but not telling of his role in any of them. Even worse, of course, is that arms were, indeed, being run to the region by, yes, Monzer al-Kassar and Jean-Bernard Lasnaud (aka. Francois Lasnosky). Gun running from Argentina and Poland to the conflict was done not only by sea but by overland by these two, and I assume others took part in the free-for-all atmosphere, beyond al Qaeda, Hezbollah, Iran, Syria, Argentina.. and bin Laden would have direct knowledge of this via his operatives there. The UN 'embargo' was one in name only, and actual prohibition of arms seems to have been a deader than doornail concept on the ground.

This framework, however, gives a progressive view of al Qaeda - starting out with a laundry list of grievances against the US, the West, and, basically, everyone who isn't a follower of bin Laden's particular type of Islam. Then the confrontational stance for self-justification before two high profile attacks: this was an organization on the move and to be respected! Which brings us to the latest missive from bin Laden and al Qaeda(document via Counterterrorism blog) and its opening paragraph:
All praise is due to Allah, who built the heavens and earth in justice, and created man as a favor and grace from Him. And from His ways is that the days rotate between the people, and from His Law is retaliation in kind: an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth and the killer is killed. And all praise is due to Allah, who awakened His slaves' desire for the Garden, and all of them will enter it except those who refuse. And whoever obeys Him alone in all of his affairs will enter the Garden, and whoever disobeys Him will have refused.
Gone are the grievances. So to is the aggressive language and self-justification. No more of the greatness - ' I have been sent with the sword between my hands to ensure that no one but Allah is worshipped...' or 'It should not be hidden from you that the people of Islam had suffered from aggression, iniquity and injustice imposed on them by the Zionist-Crusaders alliance and their collaborators;'

Why, its almost like something has taken the wind out of the sails, here. It is a very, yes, passive voice that bin Laden uses to introduce this speech. Now he speaks of 'tooth for a tooth' so the whole world will have dentures, no doubt. He is not speaking as the active adherent, the one bringing to light the oppressiveness of the world against Muslims. Those words at the start are missing completely and what replaces it is something that is far, far worse for him: he is in a 'kill or be killed' scenario of his own devising and he is not winning. What happened?


Take a look at Ayman al-Zawahiri's speech on 05 JAN 2007 (via BBC) and one sees the previous, fervent language, again:
My Muslim brothers in Somalia: Do not be terrified by America's power as you have defeated it before, thanks to God and His grace.

Today, America is weaker than before as the mujahideen dealt a fatal blow to it in Afghanistan and Iraq. Hence, it sent its slaves to you. Therefore, do not be affected by the first shock, it is just worthless propaganda, arrogance, and haughtiness. The real battle will begin by launching your campaigns against the Ethiopian forces with God's help and might.
al Qaeda, to put it bluntly, got its clock cleaned in Somalia. Not by the mighty United States or Great Britain or Israel. Nope. Who are the great world beaters, mightier than these great, industrialized Nations that handed a hard drubbing to al Qaeda and its followers?


Eight months later and here comes Osama bin Laden with this lengthy diatribe, no doubt full of 'hidden meanings', but the unthinkable has happened. The once mighty warriors who defeated the Soviet Union got shoved around by Ethiopia. The US did have some ships and air power, there, but mostly for observation and deterrent effect... a bit of shelling on a camp site or two. The hard ground work to clear the Islamic Courts out was delivered by Ethiopia and a couple of Somali warlords.

How the mighty have fallen, huh?

Don't believe it? Ok, lets take a look a bit further on in the 1996 bin Laden fatwa:
By orders from the USA they also arrested a large number of scholars, Da'ees and young people - in the land of the two Holy Places- among them the prominent Sheikh Salman Al-Oud'a and Sheikh Safar Al-Hawali and their brothers; (We bemoan this and can only say: "No power and power acquiring except through Allah"). We, myself and my group, have suffered some of this injustice ourselves; we have been prevented from addressing the Muslims. We have been pursued in Pakistan, Sudan and Afghanistan, hence this long absence on my part. But by the Grace of Allah, a safe base is now available in the high Hindukush mountains in Khurasan ; where--by the Grace of Allah-the largest infidel military force of the world was destroyed. And the myth of the super power was withered in front of the Mujahideen cries of Allahu Akbar (God is greater). Today we work from the same mountains to lift the iniquity that had been imposed on the Ummah by the Zionist-Crusader alliance, particularly after they have occupied the blessed land around Jerusalem, route of the journey of the Prophet (ALLAH'S BLESSING AND SALUTATIONS ON HIM) and the land of the two Holy Places. We ask Allah to bestow us with victory, He is our Patron and He is the Most Capable.
This was during that period in Afghanistan where the Taliban were marching forward and taking town after town and, indeed, looked to have the ability to take the entire Nation. Osama is *boasting* that his brand of Islam is on the march via the Taliban and that the start of the glorious changes brought by Allah would begin.

Even before that, a French journalist reported on this in 1995, thanks to Legal Services of India for the document:
April 1995
In a never-published interview with a French journalist, Osama bin Laden says that his decision to fight alongside Afghan mujahedeen dated from "the time when the Americans decided to help the Afghans fight the Russians."

"To counter these atheist Russians, the Saudis chose me as their representative in Afghanistan... I did not fight against the communist threat while forgetting the peril from the West."

"For us, the idea was not to get involved more than necessary in the fight against the Russians, which was the business of the Americans, but rather to show our solidarity with our Islamist brothers. I discovered that it was not enough to fight in Afghanistan, but that we had to fight on all fronts against communist or Western oppression. The urgent thing was communism, but the next target was America... This is an open war up to the end, until victory."

A war by bin Laden against America, and he would carry that concept out. This is before victories against the Afghan regime, before Kenya and Tanzania but AFTER the 1993 WTC attacks in which al Qaeda played a role, although not a central one.

To carry that war out the 1998 message had this lovely passage:
The ruling to kill the Americans and their allies -- civilians and military -- is an individual duty for every Muslim who can do it in any country in which it is possible to do it, in order to liberate the al-Aqsa Mosque and the holy mosque [Mecca] from their grip, and in order for their armies to move out of all the lands of Islam, defeated and unable to threaten any Muslim. This is in accordance with the words of Almighty Allah, "and fight the pagans all together as they fight you all together," and "fight them until there is no more tumult or oppression, and there prevail justice and faith in Allah."
That's right, its a sanction to kill any American or its allies, any time, any where. One does not say *that* about any Nation unless you really do expect to carry it out. By this time he had helped the Afghans to thwart the USSR, helped the Taliban to gain power and was, even then, plotting to kill more Americans. Allah, from this viewpoint, had pointed a clear direction even provided the perfect template to carry out successful attacks. What more could a guy want, huh? Well, something to beat Ethiopia with, is my guess...

How does he talk about the US today? Well, this gives us something of a clue:
To preface, I say: despite America being the greatest economic power and possessing the most powerful and up-to-date military arsenal as well; and despite it spending on this war and is army more than the entire world spends on its armies; and despite it being the being the major state influencing the policies of the world, as if it has a monopoly on the unjust right of veto; despite all of this, 19 young men were able - by the grace of Allah, the Most High- to change the direction of its compass. And in fact, the subject of the Mujahideen has become an inseparable part of the speech of your leader, and the effects and signs of that are not hidden.
In one of the most interesting views of the US as, previously, bin Laden had discounted, almost entirely, the economic might of the US. From an interview of Osama bin Laden by ABC reporter John Miller MAY 1998 (document courtesy Legal Services of India):
Bin Laden believes that the United States, which was so heavily involved in supporting the Afghan rebels, misses the profound point of that exercise: Through sheer will, even superpowers can be defeated.

"There is a lesson to learn from this for he who wishes to learn," he said. "The Soviet Union entered Afghanistan in the last week of 1979, and with Allah's help their flag was folded a few years later and thrown in the trash, and there was nothing left to call the Soviet Union."

The war changed bin Laden. "It cleared from Muslim minds the myth of superpowers," he said. He was blooded, a hero among militant Muslims, with perhaps three thousand men waiting to follow him. But follow him where, into what battle? Many of these men had not been home for years. By then, fighting was all some of them knew. And there were huge stockpiles of weapons and grenades and rocket launchers, many of them bought for the mujahideen rebels by the CIA.
Indeed all the economic might of the USSR didn't do them much good in Afghanistan, but then that is not a place to fight the kind of war that the USSR fought, either. It is ironic to think that a wealthy son of a Saudi family would put forward that the strength of superpowers are a 'myth'. While one might be amazed at a stockpile of RPGs and AK-47's, those are relatively cheap, arms-wise, so much so they are the 'loss leaders' of the large independent arms merchants. The USSR had forgotten the lessons of World War II and Korea, for that matter, about mountain warfare, which is the domain of small and competent forces, not huge armies. The victory of a 'David' over a 'Goliath' is not assured in such conditions, but when poor Goliath can't even breathe well and David is doing calisthenics, you would think some institutional memory would come back to them. Afghanistan is not a place where money buys armies, but is a place where small bands of men can hold out nearly forever, even in the modern environment of warfare, with very little more than small arms and mobility. bin Laden thought he had seen the myth of 'money buying power' evaporate, while what he saw was the enactment of the ages old fights in mountains, the last holdfast of the desperate and the best place to attack the strong.

Iraq, and most of the Middle East, however, are a different story, and where troops can maneuver freely and easily money for logistics is paramount. A change in view comes, however, when he sees others profiting from the Middle East, particularly oil sales. The 1996 fatwa obviously saw something a bit different, but with a victory finally under his belt, bin Laden would change his tune in only a year. From the list of grievances that bin Laden feels against the US and its allies we get this:
Under such circumstances, to push the enemy-the greatest Kufr- out of the country is a prime duty. No other duty after Belief is more important than the duty of had . Utmost effort should be made to prepare and instigate the Ummah against the enemy, the American-Israeli alliance- occupying the country of the two Holy Places and the route of the Apostle (Allah's Blessings and Salutations may be on him) to the Furthest Mosque (Al-Aqsa Mosque). Also to remind the Muslims not to be engaged in an internal war among themselves, as that will have grieve consequences namely:

1-consumption of the Muslims human resources as most casualties and fatalities will be among the Muslims people.

2-Exhaustion of the economic and financial resources.

3-Destruction of the country infrastructures

4-Dissociation of the society

5-Destruction of the oil industries. The presence of the USA Crusader military forces on land, sea and air of the states of the Islamic Gulf is the greatest danger threatening the largest oil reserve in the world. The existence of these forces in the area will provoke the people of the country and induces aggression on their religion, feelings and prides and push them to take up armed struggle against the invaders occupying the land; therefore spread of the fighting in the region will expose the oil wealth to the danger of being burned up. The economic interests of the States of the Gulf and the land of the two Holy Places will be damaged and even a greater damage will be caused to the economy of the world. I would like here to alert my brothers, the Mujahideen, the sons of the nation, to protect this (oil) wealth and not to include it in the battle as it is a great Islamic wealth and a large economical power essential for the soon to be established Islamic state, by Allah's Permission and Grace. We also warn the aggressors, the USA, against burning this Islamic wealth (a crime which they may commit in order to prevent it, at the end of the war, from falling in the hands of its legitimate owners and to cause economic damages to the competitors of the USA in Europe or the Far East, particularly Japan which is the major consumer of the oil of the region).

6-Division of the land of the two Holy Places, and annexing of the northerly part of it by Israel. Dividing the land of the two Holy Places is an essential demand of the Zionist-Crusader alliance. The existence of such a large country with its huge resources under the leadership of the forthcoming Islamic State, by Allah's Grace, represent a serious danger to the very existence of the Zionist state in Palestine. The Nobel Ka'ba, -the Qiblah of all Muslims- makes the land of the two Holy Places a symbol for the unity of the Islamic world. Moreover, the presence of the world largest oil reserve makes the land of the two Holy Places an important economical power in the Islamic world. The sons of the two Holy Places are directly related to the life style (Seerah) of their forefathers, the companions, may Allah be pleased with them. They consider the Seerah of their forefathers as a source and an example for re-establishing the greatness of this Ummah and to raise the word of Allah again. Furthermore the presence of a population of fighters in the south of Yemen, fighting in the cause of Allah, is a strategic threat to the Zionist-Crusader alliance in the area. The Prophet (ALLAH'S BLESSING AND SALUTATIONS ON HIM) said: (around twelve thousands will emerge from Aden/Abian helping -the cause of- Allah and His messenger, they are the best, in the time, between me and them) narrated by Ahmad with a correct trustworthy reference.

7-An internal war is a great mistake, no matter what reasons are there for it. the presence of the occupier-the USA- forces will control the outcome of the battle for the benefit of the international Kufr.
There are two absolutely lovely passages that will come back to haunt bin Laden. The first is his edict NOT to go after the oil wealth of Saudi Arabia, which was *after* the al Qaeda attack on the OPM-SANG complex there. It is a very difficult thing to persuade other Nations that has Nationals there helping Saudi Arabia both for its armed forces and for its oil processing that you really aren't going out to kill them... when, of course, you do. But the other is even more interesting not just for Saudi Arabia, but for the Middle East as a whole, and that is the last one. It is a clear and distinct recognition that if Muslim turns on Muslim in Saudi Arabia, but anywhere, really, that it will not be al Qaeda on the winning side but the wealthy US. Clearly Osama did not understand the depth of his words or he would never have allowed the bucher Zarqawi to live, not to speak of giving him a high place in the scheme of things in Iraq.

This is called: Hubris.

And the pride of bin Laden in his ideals is evident that he actually does not believe that #7 is true for the US, because of the actions that have been taken. Again from the 1996 fatwa:
Few days ago the news agencies had reported that the Defence Secretary of the Crusading Americans had said that "the explosion at Riyadh and Al-Khobar had taught him one lesson: that is not to withdraw when attacked by coward terrorists".

We say to the Defence Secretary that his talk can induce a grieving mother to laughter! and shows the fears that had enshrined you all. Where was this false courage of yours when the explosion in Beirut took place on 1983 AD (1403 A.H). You were turned into scattered pits and pieces at that time; 241 mainly marines solders were killed. And where was this courage of yours when two explosions made you to leave Aden in lees than twenty four hours!

But your most disgraceful case was in Somalia; where- after vigorous propaganda about the power of the USA and its post cold war leadership of the new world order- you moved tens of thousands of international force, including twenty eight thousands American solders into Somalia. However, when tens of your solders were killed in minor battles and one American Pilot was dragged in the streets of Mogadishu you left the area carrying disappointment, humiliation, defeat and your dead with you. Clinton appeared in front of the whole world threatening and promising revenge , but these threats were merely a preparation for withdrawal. You have been disgraced by Allah and you withdrew; the extent of your impotence and weaknesses became very clear. It was a pleasure for the "heart" of every Muslim and a remedy to the "chests" of believing nations to see you defeated in the three Islamic cities of Beirut , Aden and Mogadishu.

I say to Secretary of Defence: The sons of the land of the two Holy Places had come out to fight against the Russian in Afghanistan, the Serb in Bosnia-Herzegovina and today they are fighting in Chechenia and -by the Permission of Allah- they have been made victorious over your partner, the Russians. By the command of Allah, they are also fighting in Tajakistan.
This is the famous listing of places that America was hit and did not RESPOND to Muslim aggression. In Iraq, however, we now get a different view of the US, and it is not one of the Mujahideen chasing the 'Zionist-Crusaders' out or any such thing. In fact being able to actually chase the US forces out is something of a sore point as it goes unmentioned by bin Laden. Very strange, that. But he still threatens pretty well, that hasn't changed with the latest missive:
If they leave their barracks, the mines devour them, and if they refuse to leave, rulings are passed against them. Thus, the only options left in front of them are to commit suicide or cry, both of which are from the severest of afflictions. So is there anything more men can do after crying and killing themselves to make you respond to them? They are doing that out of the severity of the humiliation, fear and terror which they are suffering. It is severer than what the slaves used to suffer at your hands centuries ago, and it is as if some of them have gone from one slavery to another slavery more severe and harmful, even if it be in the fancy dress of the Defense Department's financial enticements.
Mines devouring people? Where are the brave mujahideen? Financial enticements? What *has* this man been smoking? The US is infamous in paying its soldiers inadequately and has for decades. 'Financial enticements'? What, the college fund deal? Say, does it pay for schooling already done, as we sure do have quite a few lettered men and women in the Armed Forces these days! Education is actually HIGHER than the average for America. And, even worse, they Volunteer for the job! Yes, average Americans actually will VOLUNTEER for low pay, poor working conditions and a physical fitness schedule that makes pro football look like cakewalk.

If the US is so weak, why cannot these brave followers of bin Laden do such a simple thing, like was done before and just kill a few soldiers and drive us out?

Why is it that the ones being chased from Somalia NOW are the Islamic Courts?

The message of mountain warfare and his own edict #7, applied more generally, are things he should have thought about a bit more. He even described the terrain of Arabia, and while its a bit more rugged in the north of Iraq, he does a good job of describing things, as seen in the 1998 release:
The Arabian Peninsula has never -- since Allah made it flat, created its desert, and encircled it with seas -- been stormed by any forces like the crusader armies spreading in it like locusts, eating its riches and wiping out its plantations. All this is happening at a time in which nations are attacking Muslims like people fighting over a plate of food. In the light of the grave situation and the lack of support, we and you are obliged to discuss current events, and we should all agree on how to settle the matter.
Yes, flat. Not at all a mountain environment. This is not the land where a few brave individuals can hold out indefinitely against an army: this is the sort of land where large armed forces must needs be dealt with by similar forces. Something al Qaeda lacks. Apparently Osama bin Laden isn't much of a military historian, for which we should be extremely thankful.

So what is the position of this latest missive from Osama? Well, beyond the fact it probably pre-sages yet another terror attack of some scope, it does not read like those tracts and fatwas of years past: this is not an organization that is seeing continued success or even the ability to hold its own. This is not the boastful and triumphant bin Laden telling of the great deeds already done and more to come. The threats are still there, but key ingredients are missing. Even worse, for him, is that he now has to try and convince us that we have LOST. This is not the missive of someone winning, as those are abrupt and straight to the point of 'get out or else I'll kill you'. No, this is begging for Americans to listen to their whining 'intellectual elites' who can't tell the difference between the law of nations and the theory of linguistic uncertainty.

Begging? Yes, and here are a few select quotes to get the tone of it, with some previous quotes to get an idea of how bin Laden sees things. Lets take the media as an example from the latest:
And for your information media, during the first years of the war, lost its credibility and manifested itself as a tool of the colonialist empires, and its condition has often been worse than the condition of the media of the dictatorial regimes which march in the caravan of the single leader.
As if! 'Tool of the colonialist empires'? Right out of the 1950's, that. This one is particularly rich as he has been going on about it since at least 1996:
(3) The state of the press and the media which became a tool of truth-hiding and misinformation; the media carried out the plan of the enemy of idolising cult of certain personalities and spreading scandals among the believers to repel the people away from their religion, as Allah, the Exalted said: {surely- as for- those who love that scandal should circulate between the believers, they shall have a grievous chastisement in this world and in the here after} (An-Noor, 24:19).
Yet another list of grievances he feels out of that lengthy fatwa. Almost the same quote, too. Mind you the guy has gotten some of the most lenient views from the Leftists that any mass murderer has gotten since Che Guevara, so wanting *more* sympathy from the press is really asking for something more akin to the Soviet style press.

Next up the already benighted UN from his latest:
So these are some of the results of the freedom about whose spreading he is talking to you. And then the backtracking of Bush on his insistence on not giving the United Nations expanded jurisdiction in Iraq is an implicit admission of his loss and defeat there.
Say, just how well *is* Kosovo doing these days? Gots a great old constitution and elected officials up and down the line yet? Because nothing spells defeat like the letters U and N. Of course I've already cited his 1996 fatwa for the 'iniquitous' UN, so that gets his feel for the organization to say the least.

How about the Democratic Party? Now venturing into US politics is something that bin Laden hasn't done that much of, lately, but this diatribe is chock-a-block with politics. So here is his take on the Democratic Party:
People of America: the world is following your news in regards to your invasion of Iraq, for people have recently come to know that, after several years of the tragedies of this war, the vast majority of you want it stopped. Thus, you elected the Democratic Party for this purpose, but the Democrats haven't made a move worth mentioning. On the contrary, they continue to agree to the spending of tens of billions to continue the killing and war there, which has led to the vast majority of you being afflicted with disappointment.
Heh. The Democratic Party cannot even do the few things they ran on last year which WASN'T to end the war, in case folks have forgotten. As to them 'agreeing to spend tens of billions to continue the killing war', perhaps bin Laden hasn't seen the level of PORK spending going on. When you have billions upon billions in pork in the budget, the actual concept of the war costing much of anything is betrayed by the ready expenditures of money for personal greed and rewards to favorites. If America was cash strapped there would be ZERO pork cash available. That also takes care of the American economy in ruins elsewhere in the diatribe. Bad economy gets you no pork. This economy has expanded at a good clip, year on year with the spending for the war, so bin Laden really does have to get a basic math course under his belt.

Then Osama bin Laden tries his hand at re-writing history:
This war was entirely unnecessary, as testified to by your own reports. And among the most capable of those from your own side who speak to you on this topic and on the manufacturing of public opinion is Noam Chomsky, who spoke sober words of advice prior to the war, but the leader of Texas doesn't like those who give advice. The entire world came out in unprecedented demonstrations to warn against waging the war and describe its true nature in eloquent terms like "no to spilling red blood for black oil," yet he paid them no heed. It is time for humankind to know that talk of the rights of man and freedom are lies produced by the White House and its allies in Europe to deceive humans, take control of their destinies and subjugate them.
Damned straight this war is unnecessary! Why the hell did you decide to wage personal, predatory war on the US its Allies and the world? Yeah, you really have to admire a linguist who knows beans about the law of nations and pontificates a the drop of a hat warning about every evil under the sun that America might ever do. Ditto for the Leftists who just can't bear thinking about a capitalist Nation actually being successful and defending herself from a human predator using religious excuses to wage his personal war against humanity.

The law of nations under which the US and all other Nations exists has a term for Osama bin Laden and, indeed, all 'terrorists': hostis humani generis - enemy of mankind.

Yes, there is actually a conceptual framework that describes this and it is, indeed, called the law of nations which is cited by the US Code and some few other places in the founding of this Nation. It is how we expect the system of nation states to work, and one good reference cited in Supreme Court cases is Monsieur De Vattel's Law of Nations, and this from Book 2, Chapter IV:
WE have seen in the preceding chapters what are the common duties of nations towards each other, — how they ought mutually to respect each other, and to abstain from all injury and all offence, — and how justice and equity ought to reign between them in their whole conduct. But hitherto we have only considered the actions of the body of the nation, of the state, of the sovereign. Private persons who are members of one nation, may offend and ill-treat the citizens of another, and may injure a foreign sovereign: — it remains for us to examine what share a state may have in the actions other citizens, and what are the rights and obligations of sovereigns in this respect.

Whoever offends the state, injures its rights, disturbs its tranquillity, or does it a prejudice in any manner whatsoever, declares himself its enemy, and exposes himself to be justly punished for it. Whoever uses a citizen ill, indirectly offends the state, which is bound to protect this citizen; and the sovereign of the latter should avenge his wrongs, punish the aggressor, and, if possible, oblige him to make full reparation; since otherwise the citizen would not obtain the great end of the civil association, which is, safety.
Osama bin Laden, by ill-treating citizens of other Nations and being held unaccountable and, indeed, declaring enmity, makes himself an aggressor. He threatens the safety of the Nation. In Book 3, Chapter 3 we see what the Just Causes for War *are*:
The right of employing force, or making war, belongs to nations no farther than is necessary for their own defence, and for the maintenance of their rights (§ 3). Now, if any one attacks a nation, or violates her perfect rights, he does her an injury. Then, and not till then, that nation has a right to repel the aggressor, and reduce him to reason. Further, she has a right to prevent the intended injury, when she sees herself threatened with it (Book II. § 50). Let us then say in general, that the foundation, or cause of every just war is injury, either already done or threatened. The justificatory reasons for war show that an injury has been received, or so far threatened as to authorize a prevention of it by arms. It is evident, however, that here the question regards the principal in the war, and not those who join in it as auxiliaries. When, therefore, we would judge whether a war be just, we must consider whether he who undertakes it has in fact received an injury, or whether he be really threatened with one. And, in order to determine what is to be considered as an injury, we must be acquainted with a nation's rights, properly so called, — that is to say, her perfect rights. These are of various kinds, and very numerous, but may all be referred to the general heads of which we have already treated, and shall further treat in the course of this work. Whatever strikes at these rights is an injury, and a just cause of war.
And in Chapter I we see that only Nations may do this:
As nature has given men no right to employ force, unless when it becomes necessary for self defence and the preservation of their rights (Book II. § 49, &c.), the inference is manifest, that, since the establishment of political societies, a right, so dangerous in its exercise, no longer remains with private persons except in those encounters where society cannot protect or defend them. In the bosom of society, the public authority decides all the disputes of the citizens, represses violence, and checks every attempt to do ourselves justice with our own hands. If a private person intends to prosecute his right against the subject of a foreign power, he may apply to the sovereign of his adversary, or to the magistrates invested with the public authority: and if he is denied justice by them, he must have recourse to his own sovereign, who is obliged to protect him. It would be too dangerous to allow every citizen the liberty of doing himself justice against foreigners; as, in that case, there would not be a single member of the state who might not involve it in war. And how could peace be preserved between nations, if it were in the power of every private individual to disturb it? A right of so momentous a nature, — the right of judging whether the nation has real grounds of complaint, whether she is authorized to employ force, and justifiable in taking up arms, whether prudence will admit of such a step, and whether the welfare of the state requires it, — that right, I say, can belong only to the body of the nation, or to the sovereign, her representative. It is doubtless one of those rights, without which there can be no salutary government, and which are therefore called rights of majesty (Book I. § 45).

Thus the sovereign power alone is possessed of authority to make war. But, as the different rights which constitute this power, originally resident in the body of the nation, may be separated or limited according to the will of the nation (Book I. § 31 and 45), it is from the particular constitution of each state, that we are to learn where the power resides, that is authorized to make war in the name of the society at large. The kings of England, whose power is in other respects so limited, have the right of making war and peace.1 Those of Sweden have lost it. The brilliant but ruinous exploits of Charles XII. sufficiently warranted the states of that kingdom to reserve to themselves a right of such importance to their safety.
Everything that Osama bin Laden puts down as a grievance gives him no cause to go to war. Indeed, his actions against the US and other Nations gives rise for for just war against *him*. In Chapter IV we see this difference between lawful and unlawful war:
Legitimate and formal warfare must be carefully distinguished from those illegitimate and informal wars, or rather predatory expeditions, undertaken either without lawful authority or without apparent cause, as likewise without the usual formalities, and solely with a view to plunder. Grotius relates several instances of the latter.5 Such were the enterprises of the grandes compagnies which had assembled in France during the wars with the English, — armies of banditti, who ranged about Europe, purely for spoil and plunder: such were the cruises of the buccaneers, without commission, and in time of peace; and such in general are the depredations of pirates. To the same class belong almost all the expeditions of the Barbary corsairs: though authorized by a sovereign, they are undertaken without any apparent cause, and from no other motive than the lust of plunder. These two species of war, I say, — the lawful and the illegitimate, — are to be carefully distinguished, as the effects and the rights arising from each are very different.
Yes, 'predatory expeditions'. That sounds a LOT like 'terrorism' to me. Osama bin Laden is trying to tear out Western civilization and the system of Nation states by its roots by what he does, and his joining in others doing the same. Vattel would look at this in the following:
In order fully to conceive the grounds of this distinction, it is necessary to recollect the nature and object of lawful war. It is only as the last remedy against obstinate injustice that the law of nature allows of war. Hence arise the rights which it gives, as we shall explain in the sequel: hence, likewise, the rules to be observed in it. Since it is equally possible that either of the parties may have right on his side, — and since, in consequence of the independence of nations, that point is not to be decided by others (§ 40), — the condition of the two enemies is the same, while the war lasts. Thus, when a nation, or a sovereign, has declared war against another sovereign on account of a difference arisen between them, their war is what among nations is called a lawful and formal war; and its effects are, by the voluntary law of nations, the same on both sides, independently of the justice of the cause, as we shall more fully show in the sequel.6 Nothing of this kind is the case in an informal and illegitimate war, which is more properly called depredation. Undertaken without any right, without even an apparent cause, it can be productive of no lawful effect, nor give any right to the author of it. A nation attacked by such sort of enemies is not under any obligation to observe towards them the rules prescribed in formal warfare. She may treat them as robbers,(146a) The inhabitants of Geneva, after defeating the famous attempt to take their city by escalade,7 caused all the prisoners whom they took from the Savoyards on that occasion to be hanged up as robbers, who had come to attack them without cause and without a declaration of war. Nor were the Genevese censured for this proceeding, which would have been detested in a formal war.
Yes, those that wage informal war are waging depredation: they are predators of mankind. Killers. They place themselves outside the law of nations and seek to overthrow them all so that they may rule solely by force. All of these things that Osama cites are excuses to wage war upon the innocent and weak, not justification for such activities. Indeed, such activities cannot be justified by individuals as warfare is the sole realm of the sovereign nation. Even in our fine era where we can't even say 'law of nations' without getting hives, terrorists can't even be given refuge under the Universal Declaration of Human Rights as they have violated what each individual must do to fall within its bounds:
Article 30.

Nothing in this Declaration may be interpreted as implying for any State, group or person any right to engage in any activity or to perform any act aimed at the destruction of any of the rights and freedoms set forth herein.
Yes, all the lovely whining about 'freedom fighters' and any sort of justification for this sort of personal, predatory warfare falls flat on its face.

Osama bin Laden and all of his followers and, indeed, all terrorists, have placed themselves outside of ANY LAW. They are Outlaws by their actions and their announcements that THEY are the law and THEY will wage war.

Enemies of mankind.

Perhaps we can wake up and actually defend the system of laws from such Outlaws *before* they so demean it that it protects no one. And Osama is just begging for that chance.

To destroy mankind and change it to his liking. And his organization feels just the same, so even with him gone, the noxious view remains.

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