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January 19, 2006

Bin Laden's "Truce"

Jawa Report has both an excellent transcript of the latest bin Laden message and some good commentary on it, in particular comparing the positions of the American Left with the statements of bin Laden, who is basically repeating many of the Left's talking points, to their discredit.

The one thing that I want to see, but haven't, is the word bin Laden used, in Arabic, that is translated as "truce". If it was hudna, as I suspect, then you should be aware that this is a common mistranslation in both Western and in terrorist apologist media. The Arabic word hudna means not a "truce" in the Western sense, but a pause in fighting while they rebuild their forces to resume the fight later. The absence of conditions to the "truce" could be because al Jazeera didn't broadcast the whole tape, or it could be because bin Laden is actually announcing hudna. However, I think it is irrelevant, because I don't believe bin Laden is in operational command of al Qaeda — at least not in Iraq — and that therefore the fighting will not ramp down regardless.

Posted by jeff at January 19, 2006 4:39 PM

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I do not care what Arabic word he actually *said*; I am convinced that what he *means* is a hudna. No deal.

Posted by: Morenuancedthanyou at January 20, 2006 11:19 AM

I didn't mean to say that the word matters in figuring out bin Laden's honesty. I was more curious about the way he phrased it because if he said hudna, it's pretty much an admission of defeat, for the moment, on his side.

Posted by: Jeff Medcalf [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 21, 2006 10:02 PM