Suddenly, and without introduction, the former leader of Al-Qaeda, Osama bin Laden, returned to the forefront of the conversation on social media, through an old message he sent more than twenty years ago to the American people.
The irony is that the return came through American activists, not Arabs, as they succeeded in a few days in transforming the “number one enemy” of the United States, at one time, into the top “trend” on the “X” platform.
How did this return happen? What is its relationship to the Gaza war? How can we read this emerging change in the mood of the younger generations in the United States?
Bin Laden’s two messages to the American people:
The return was from the TikTok platform, where American activists discovered that Bin Laden had written an old letter to the “American people” that had been forgotten, but the Israeli aggression on the Gaza Strip brought it back to mind.
At the beginning, it must be pointed out that it was not one message, but two messages. The first was written by Bin Laden in November 2002, in response to articles published by a group of American writers asking about the reasons for Muslims’ hatred of the United States, which prompted a group of them to carry out the famous September 11 attack.
As for the second, he wrote it in 2009, during the era of former President Barack Obama, in which he spoke about the feasibility of the war in Afghanistan and its economic and moral costs, as it continued for years, without any signs of victory.
The first message is the important one here; Because it is the one in which Bin Laden spoke at length about Palestine, as he considered it the primary reason for the hostility of the United States, considering it the reason for the continuation of the Zionist occupation’s crimes of murder, displacement and destruction, stressing that Washington’s support for these crimes does not need a lengthy explanation to prove it.
He also vowed revenge on the Palestinian people, saying: “The blood flowing from Palestine must be avenged equally. You must know that the Palestinians will not cry alone; their women will not be widowed alone; their children will not be orphaned alone.”
This message was published in its entirety by the British newspaper The Guardian in 2002, before it deleted it in the last few hours, for fear of the American reaction.
A new American generation feels the crisis:
It is not yet possible to say with certainty how American activists found Bin Laden’s message and revived it again, but it seems that the end of the thread started with Lynette Adkins, an American activist who supports Palestinian rights and is well-known in the TikTok community. . She says in a video clip: “I want everyone to stop what they are doing now and go read it (i.e. bin Laden’s letter). It is literally two pages. Go read a letter to America.”
Then she adds in meaningful phrases:
“And please come back here and tell me what you think; I feel like I’m having an existential crisis right now, and a lot of people are, so I just need someone else to feel this way.”
Another activist, Rayrides, wrote: “We’ve been lied to all our lives. I remember seeing people cheering when Osama was found and killed? I was a kid then, and it confused me. It still baffles me today. The world deserves better than this did.” “The country (meaning America) is theirs. Change must happen.”
As for Jack Shields, he says: “We were told that he (bin Laden) hates us because of our freedom, but if you actually read his words, he hates us because of the evil American money that is fighting for it in Israel.”
Also caught my attention, Lucas Gage – a former US Marine, who previously fought in Iraq, believing that he was on a mission to save the Iraqi people, before it became clear to him that he was being tricked – says:
“Although the war is over, I am not done fighting. Our true enemies are not in a foreign land. They are here in Washington, D.C..”
Lucas took advantage of the appearance of “Bin Laden’s” message to rebroadcast it, translated, to his followers on the “X” platform, where the video clip had been viewed 1.7 million times as of writing these lines.
These are just examples of millions of comments, which of course cannot be monitored in an article like this, but they carry important meanings that cannot be overlooked.
How can we read Bin Laden’s sudden appearance?
If it is extremely difficult to make final judgments regarding the phenomenon, this does not prevent us from trying to find a preliminary explanation for it.
It seems that the horrific Zionist massacres in the Gaza Strip – especially against women and children – left a wound in the public conscience of the American people, especially the segment of young people who are active on social media sites and are familiar with the pictures that document these crimes on a regular basis, which led to the destabilization of the certainty of what was considered One of the constants in the past, foremost of which is the absolute American support for Israel.
Hence came Bin Laden’s message, which was concerned with explaining and interpreting the causes of the clash, to sound the alarm bell for them about what might happen in the future. Because of the unlimited American support in committing these massacres, which will not be erased from Arab and Islamic memory for many decades.
The appearance of the message cannot be separated from the tense atmosphere within American society, where accusations of corruption against American political elites are increasing, receiving money from Jewish pressure groups, such as AIPAC, and mounting talk about the role of arms companies and capitalist society in directing US policies, even at the expense of values. And morals.
This tension was expressed by American activists by rereading the reasons for the September 11 attack, away from the narrative of the civilizational conflict between Muslims and the civilizational values of the West that were adopted and promoted extensively, to justify waging a devastating war against Afghanistan and Iraq.
But all of this would not have happened with such speed and high dynamism, had it not been for the independence struggle sparked by the Palestinian resistance in Gaza, which indicates major regional and international changes.