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Thursday, September 13, 2012

Al Qaeda releases video of Jewish hostage in Afghanistan. Why?

Warren Weinstein, an American Jewish contractor was kidnapped on August 13, 2011 in Lahore, Pakistan. In December, Ayman al-Zawahiri, the current leader of Al Qaeda, claimed responsibility for Weinstein’s kidnapping.

A month later, reports suggested that Weinstein was being held by “Lashkar-e-Jhangvi militants in North Waziristan.” In May 2012, a video of Weinstein was released by Al Qaeda. During the video, Weinstein said, “My life is in your hands, Mr. President…If you accept the demands, I live; if you don't accept the demands, then I die."

A few days ago, Zawahiri implied in a new video that Weinstein was still alive. Today, Al Qaeda released a new video of Weinstein in which he appeals to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to intervene.

Here is the video, and below is a transcript.

My name is Warren Weinstein. I am 71. I’m a consultant. I was working in Pakistan when I was captured by the Mujahidin. I appealed to the President of the United States and the American government to intervene on my behalf and to seek my release.

I am the father of two daughters, I have a wife, I’m a grandfather, and I was hoping I would be able to again see my family alive.

Unfortunately, President Obama and the American government have shown no interest in my case. Did not respond and have in no way tried to be responsive to and accept the demands of the Mujahidin.

Therefore, as a Jew, I am appealing to you, Prime Minister Netanyahu, the head of the Jewish State of Israel, as one Jew to another, to please intervene on my behalf, to work with the Mujahidin and to accept their demands, so that I can be released and returned to my family; see my wife, my children and grandchildren again. So, as one Jew to another, I beg you to please accept the demands of the Mujahidin and to obtain my freedom.
The demands by Al Qaeda seem to be:

Zawahiri implies Weinstein is not to be freed "until the Crusaders release our captives" including Omar Abdel Rahman and Aafia Siddiqui according to a translation by the SITE Monitoring Service...Last year Zawahiri issued a far longer list of demands, including Israeli withdrawal from the Gaza Strip and an end to U.S. military bombings abroad.
Since most of the demands are for the US, why is Al Qaeda having Weinstein ask for Israeli help?

Are they trying to dare Israel to mount a rescue operation? Do they think Israel can influence the US to release terrorists in order to save Weinstein? Is this just a pathetic attempt by a fading Al Qaeda to appear relevant and stay in the news? Or do they want to taunt Israel in the future by saying "we can kidnap Jews and there is nothing you can do about it"?

It is good to see that Weinstein appears healthy, but this video release is very bizarre.