Robert Fisk: Did Osama really believe I would polish his image?


Related Topics

O Lordy, lordy. So there's Bin Laden, hiding in Abbottabad and he's waffling on about Fisk.

Should The Independent's man in the Middle East and my old chum Abdul Bari Atwan be given exclusive material on the 10th anniversary of the international crimes against humanity of 9/11 (my definition, not OBL's)? Can OBL be sent a translation of an article by Fisk entitled: "The most important things about al-Qa'ida"?

But forget the letters. Long ago – even before his incarceration, one of his men asked me for a copy of my book, The Great War for Civilisation in Arabic. OBL might learn a thing or two, I thought. And I dropped it off with a contact when I was next in Islamabad. Don't know if OBL read it – but he had plenty of time, didn't he?

Then there's Adam Gadahn, Bin Laden's American spokesman, whose letter to his master includes an unflattering article I wrote about al-Qa'ida – in which I said it is, "one of the most sectarian organisations ever invented." A good translation. I bet Bin Laden enjoyed it, along with my condemnation of al-Qa'ida attacks on Christians in which I pointed out how these play into the hands of Bush and Blair. Did OBL take me seriously? Well, a lot of his outgoing mail condemned attacks on Christians and on Shia and Sunni Muslim mosques. Bit late, though.

Deary me, these dotty folk spent their time in useless self-criticism, frustrated at the "disasters" visited upon al-Qa'ida, vainly trying to cash in on the Arab Spring and demanding a new "media strategy" involving Fisk, Atwan and up to 48 others. Should have spent more time, shouldn't he, watching his contact messenger and the drones overhead.

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Volunteer Trustee opportunities now available at The Society for Experimental Biology

Unpaid Voluntary Position : Reach Volunteering: Volunteer your expertise as Tr...

Early Years Educator

£68 - £73 per day + Competitive rates of pay based on experience: Randstad Edu...

Nursery Nurse

£69 - £73 per day + Competitive London rates of pay: Randstad Education Group:...

Primary KS1 NQTs required in Lambeth

£117 - £157 per day + Competitive London rates: Randstad Education Group: * Pr...

Day In a Page

Read Next
Good old days? Social justice had real meaning for those who lived through the war  

Social justice is political pie in the sky

DJ Taylor

Street harrassment: There are some things only a man can explain

Katy Guest
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam