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There is no Bin Laden? By: Itamar Marcus and Barbara Crook
FrontPageMagazine.com | Tuesday, January 17, 2006

A poem appearing on the opinion page of today's Al-Hayat Al-Jadida gives insight into the Palestinian Authority worldview. The blaming of Arab Muslims for Islamic terrorism, from Bin Laden to Al-Zarqawi in Iraq, is described as a fantasy invented by "occupation forces" to "justify war and disasters."

The poet's questioning the existence of Bin Laden is consistent with a Palestinian denial of Arab Muslim responsibility for the World Trade Center Attacks. A 2003 public opinion poll revealed that only 46% of Palestinians believed that Bin Laden was responsible for the attacks against the US on September 11, 2001. Twenty-six per cent felt that Israel was behind the attacks.

This refusal to acknowledge Muslim responsibility for Islamic terror is not unique to Palestinian society. A popular music video from Egypt, which you can view by clicking here, shows an animated cartoon image of Ariel Sharon pushing the button that sent the terrorists' planes crashing into the World Trade Center. This music video is exceedingly popular throughout the Arab world, and appears regularly on Arab satellite TV.

Today's poem denies the existence of Arab-Muslim terror, and claims it is the West's justification for its wars against Arabs.

The following is the translation:

"The Imaginary Terror"

"Who can testify that Bin Laden still exists?
Who saw Al-Zarqawi and can swear that he exists?
The fairytales remind us of the tales of the hyena and the demon -
Legends fabricated by elderly men on dark nights.

He who resists throughout Iraq is Al-Zarqawi
He who fights on the lands of Palestine is a weak terrorist
This is a fantasy that was made by the forces of occupation
To justify war and disasters."
[Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, January 16, 2006]

Poll conducted among Palestinians by Palestinian Center for Public Opinion, September 2003. Full results of the poll, which compares views of Israeli Jews, Israeli Arabs and Palestinians, can be seen here.

Who do you believe planned the 9/11 attacks against the United States?



Osama Bin Laden


Saddam Hussein


United States




Someone else


Don't know


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Itamar Marcus is the founder and director of Palestinian Media Watch. He was appointed by the Israeli government to be the Israeli representative (communication specialist) to the Trilateral (Israeli-American-Palestinian) Anti-Incitement Committee established under the Wye Accords. From 1998 to 2000, Mr. Marcus served as research director of the Center for Monitoring the Impact of Peace, writing reports on PA, Syrian, and Jordanian schoolbooks. He holds a BA in political science from City College of New York and an MA in Hebrew culture from New York University. Barbara Crook is associate director and North American representative of Palestinian Media Watch. She teaches at the School of Journalism and Communications at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada. She holds an Honors BA in English literature from Queen's University, an MA in journalism from the University of Western Ontario, and is a Southam Fellow at the University of Toronto.

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