Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, speaking in a new audio recording released Thursday on various jihadi Web forums and downloaded by CBS News, has asked Somalis to rebel against their newly elected president.
This is the second audio released by bin Laden in six days, and the reference to Somalia's new president, who was only elected on Jan. 31, helps to date the recording. In an audio released on March 14, bin Laden asked Muslim youth to disseminate extremist literature online.
In the audio, titled "Fight On O' Champions of Somalia," Bin Laden first analyzes the situation in Somalia, explaining that Ethiopian troops were acting as proxy forces for NATO and the "International Crusade" which he says appointed former President Abdullah Yucef as its representative in the country.
Al Qaeda's leader doesn't waste much time in getting to his opinion of the newly elected president of Somalia, an Islamist militant-turned-politician Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmad.
Bin Laden says Ahmad is just another puppet brought in by the West because Somalis were fooled by the not-so-convincing President Yucef.
"But, since you weren't taken in by the old trick of 'Karzais' which they have been using in the region, they replaced him and brought in a new, revised version, similar to Sayyaf, Rabbani and Ahmed Shah Massoud, who were leaders of the Afghan Mujahideen before they turned back on their heels as apostates and helped their ally - America – bring down the Islamic Emirate in Afghanistan," bin Laden said.
Bin Laden decreed that Somalis should continue to fight the new regime, just as they did with the old one. "These sorts of presidents are the surrogates of our enemies and their authority is null and void in the first place, and as Sheikh Sharif is one of them, he must be dethroned and fought."