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Sunday, September 11, 2005

Melbourne? 

You have undoubtedly read elsewhere about the newly-released videotape in which an al Qaeda spokesman believed to be Adam Gadahn of Orange County, CA, threatens to blow up Los Angeles and Melbourne (Melbourne?*), with none of the "restraint or compassion" that are universally recognized as that organization's trademarks. Under the circumstances it is hard to blame our indefatigable colleague Susie Madrak for wondering whether the latest threat is more likely motivated by A.) Osama's implacable hatred for the Great White Satan, or B.) the President's 38% approval ratings, and while we cannot definitively say which answer is correct, terrorism expert Bernard Reich of the University of Virginia informs us that it probably ain't A.):
"My guess is this one isn't going to lead to anything, but it was an opportunistic effort because it was just prior to 9/11 and because [Gadahn] may well be trying to build his own credibility," Dr Reich told ABC radio.

"And to put it bluntly, while I find Los Angeles an appealing target, I haven't figured out what Melbourne is" . . . .

[H]e said it was strange that al-Qaeda would use an insignificant member to communicate a major threat when it could have used one of its leaders.

"What I find odd is that he is a relatively low placed individual and out of the mainstream of the al-Qaeda leadership," he said.

"Why send the third stream cricket player if you've got the star of the team?"
Photo: Alleged al Qaeda spokesperson (far left) suffers momentary "wardrobe malfunction" (near left) in blurry video footage mysteriously edited from West Coast television feed.

* -- N.B.: It's funny if you say it in a Jerry Lewis voice. No, really, just try it. "MELLLLbourne??"

You can thank us later.


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