ABC News is in possession of a tape purportedly from the group, threatening attacks on the US.
A new videotape that has surfaced in Pakistan threatens a massive attack against the United States by a purported American member of Al Qaeda. It is not yet known if the tape is an authentic Al Qaeda production, but it bears enough resemblance that some experts are taking the tape seriously.
The chilling 75-minute digital videotape, seen by a Christian Science Monitor reporter in Pakistan, where it was obtained by ABC News, shows a high degree of sophistication and bears the logo of Al Qaeda's video production house, As-Sahab.
On the video, the unknown man's face is masked with a Palestinian scarf and sunglasses. He stabs the air with his finger, which appears to be fair-skinned, as he delivers his warning in American-accented English.
"Allah willing, the streets of America will run red with blood, matching drop for drop the blood of America's victims," says the speaker, who calls himself Azzam al Amriki (or Azzam the American). "What took place on September 11th was but the opening salvo in the global war on America."
The next attacks, he adds, "could come at any moment."
This is the first time a purported Al Qaeda video has featured an English-speaking messenger, and while he references the top two Al Qaeda leaders, neither Osama bin Laden or Ayman al-Zawahiri appear. This unique circumstance, as well as the highly charged timing of the tape's release just days before Americans head to the polls, has the US intelligence community approaching the tape with caution.
"As-Sahab is an Al Qaeda propaganda outfit and engages in psychological warfare," says Bruce Hoffman, an expert on terror at the RAND Corp. in Washington. "Given the hype of the US election in general, that the jihadists claim credit for affecting the outcome of the Spanish elections, and the heightened chatter that intelligence agencies acknowledge, I'm surprised we haven't seen something like this sooner."
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