Is bin Laden ‘virtually impotent’

President George W. Bush’s homeland security adviser said on Sunday al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden is “virtually impotent” and can do little more than send videotaped messages.

Top White House aide Fran Townsend said officials were studying bin Laden’s new video tape for clues to his health or whereabouts, and whether there were any hidden meanings or messages.

But she said there was no sign of an imminent attack.

“This is a man on the run in a cave who is virtually impotent other than his ability to get these messages out,” Townsend said on CNN’s “Late Edition.” “It is propaganda.

“Based on our experience, we have never seen bin Laden use a tape to trigger any operational activity.”

Bin Laden made his first video appearance in nearly three years in a new tape released on Friday ahead of the sixth anniversary of al Qaeda’s September 11 attacks on the United States.

Townsend said information from the bin Laden tape was being shared with U.S. agencies both domestically and overseas.

U.S. terrorism monitoring firm IntelCenter said on Sunday it had early indications that a second bin Laden message would be released in coming weeks.

It said the next message was to be an audio statement addressed to Muslims around the world, although there had not yet been a formal announcement by as-Sahab, al Qaeda’s media arm.


  1. keith

    Osama Bin Laden is absolutely NOT “virtually impotent”…not by a long shot! All the while he remains alive and well he serves Mr. Bush’s purposes admirably.

    I still find it absolutely fascinating that, for going on six years now, a country that can EASILY detect something on the ground the size of a license plate from Earth orbit STILL can’t seem to find him.

    This is a person who is also supposedly living in a cave and needs to lug around a dialysis machine for his regular treatments. The last time I checked, dialysis machines were quite a bit larger than a license plate.

    Obviously, Mr. Bin Laden is very much alive and well. Could it be that he’s ALREADY been whisked away to live high off the hog in one of those wonderfully secret (and until recently, “non-existent”) CIA rendition camps or safe houses somewhere?

    Could it also be that, in return, Bin Laden has now taken on a new job that furthers the goals of both Mr. Bush AND himself? Those plans call for Bin Laden to keep his minions continually fired up, thereby keeping the middle east in a constant state of turmoil (spelled “a non-threat to Israel”) all the while keeping the the REST of us regularly terrorized and, in turn, fully supportive of Mr. Bush’s trumped-up “war on terror”?

    Sure sounds like a “win-win” to me.

    It is important to remember that the Bushes and the Bin Ladens are lifelong family friends. And, what are friends for if not to help you out in a pinch?

    Clearly, Osama Bin Laden is FAR more valuable to Mr. Bush and his Cabal alive than dead.

    Which probably also explains why he still is.

  2. kiki

    What was Townsend THINKING ?!?! To make a statement like that is right up there with Dubya’s infamous “Bring ’em on!” comment. Even if Bin Laden’s in our custody secretly like Keith posted above, this statement is tantamount to taunting.

    Bin Laden may well be personally powerless, but there are tens of thousands of jihadists around the world who are not!

    I would not doubt for an instant that many jihadists would take that statement as a personal challenge.

    I gather from that unfortunate and completely stupid remark that our administration DOES want us to be attacked so Dubya can declare martial law and cancel the ’08 elections.

  3. clammer

    Does anyone remember President Jackass standing outside the White House before we got into this mess saying “Bring it on”….. and they did. Now we are rubbing Bin Laden’s nose in it again. Look out

  4. Donnat

    I agree with the first post, Bin Laden has to stay hidden where we ‘can’t find him’ so he can be trotted out every election year as the GOP boogey man.

    How much longer bovine America will still be scared of him, I can’t say.

    Fear factor aside, he’s also related to Bush’s business buddies at Carlyle Group and they are the ones who’ll decide if and when he’ll ever be found, not Bush.


  5. Helen Rainier

    Now I’m totally confused.

    Bush says OBL is still a threat.

    Frannie says he’s impotent.

    Are we supposed to kill him or give him a prescription for Viagra?

    Or, maybe he has a killer erection?

    Would someone please help me here?

  6. Boots

    Did anyone really watch that foolish tape? It’s bogus. Bin Laden is a long time dead. He wasn’t that important to start with and the foolish politicos and pundits who keep “catapulting the propaganda” aren’t fooling too many people anymore. At least I hope they are not. Because if they are, this country is beyond help.

  7. fabricfloozy

    I have been wondering why they haven’t caught Bin Laden and today a liberal radio talkshow host explained that there is a symbiotic relationship between Bin Laden and Bush. Bin Laden always has a tape before the 9/11 anniversaries which Bush uses to justify his war against terror and continuance of the Iraq War. (Remember we haven’t invaded any African tyrant’s country, just those of oil-rich countries).
    Bin Laden needs Bush’s big bully cowboy speeches to incite anger in his (Bin Laden’s) followers. Each one gives the other a reason to exist. Well, if Hell exists, I hope they get to room together. They deserve eachother

  8. Klaus Hergeschimmer

    Yep! The Chimp got his old Osama bin Laden talking action figure out of his dusty closet to give an Islamic version of Floyd R. Turbo to monologue us all.

  9. SEAL

    Keith: I don’t know if you saw what I finally got totally pissed and said about the Osama bin Laden BS on another topic but here it is again:

    Oh hell! You have no idea how infuriating this whole OBL lying crap is for me. Just turn over all the intel you have about him and assign the “mission” of his capture or kill to my guys and they will be back in a very short time with him or his head in a bag or proof that he has been dead for however long he has been dead. Dammit, that is what we do.

    The fact that they have not given the mission to the SEALs is proof that they are liars and do not want him caught.
    Keith, what most people do not know is that SEALs are not just a bunch of guys in rubber suits who spend all their time in the water. Our primary mission is terrorists. Take ’em out. That is what we do. If the terrorist are found in the US, the FBI uses the local SWAT to assist them in the capture. If the terrorist are outside the US, a genuine threat of some sort, and the local government cannot or will not act to “get” them, they are a SEAL mission.

    There is no “capture” involved unless they want one of them brought back to “question” at one of their not-so-secret dungeons. The mission is a wipeout of all terrorists and equipment and materials. Everything and everyone is destroyed. In and out fast. We never leave any of our people behind to identify who it was. Deniability.

    Personally, I never had one of my men killed on a mission. A few, including myself, were wounded. The last 11 years I was the brass and spent most of my time behind a desk sending missions. But I never lost a man and I’m damn proud of that. However, you should know that this type of mission was and is extreme and rare. We are the last option. But, like I said above, OBL should be given to us. That is what we do and we do it better than anyone.

  10. keith

    …and all of which now begs the even larger question, SEAL, as to why you and your boys were not (and so far have not) been given the job to go after him.

    WHY is he not being “gone after”?