What Osama Bin Laden Talks About Over Breakfast


| 1/28/2010 3:53:22 PM


Osama Bin LadenIn a clip from Osama Bin Laden’s personal audiotape collection, militant jihadis laugh and joke while cooking breakfast. They argue over how to light a stubborn kerosene stove. Finally, one of the militants says, “You see now? Engineers are we!” Another responds, “Engineers of… eggs.”

Osama Bin Laden’s 1,500 audiotapes are not always riveting, but they are revealing. The recordings, discovered in 2001 after the US invasion of Afghanistan, contain wedding speeches, taxi cab conversations, and even Osama Bin Laden reading his own poetry. A prominent family in Bin Laden’s former neighborhood gave them to CNN, who wasn’t very interested and turned them over to the FBI, who wasn’t interested either. The FBI gave them to the Afghan Media Project at Williams College, who contacted linguistic anthropologist Flagg Miller to analyze them.

In the tapes, Miller, profiled by the Chronicle of Higher Education,  has found a highly personal window into the personalities of some of the most wanted and reviled people in the world. According to Chronicle, the tapes “offer clues about how the jihadis see themselves and one another, how they think about what they're doing and why they're doing it.” It could be invaluable information, as the “war on terror” drags on through its eighth year.

Source: The Chronicle of Higher Education

Image by Hamid Mir, licensed under Creative Commons.





Pay Now Save $5!

Utne Summer 2016Want to gain a fresh perspective? Read stories that matter? Feel optimistic about the future? It's all here! Utne Reader offers provocative writing from diverse perspectives, insightful analysis of art and media, down-to-earth news and in-depth coverage of eye-opening issues that affect your life.

Save Even More Money By Paying NOW!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. You save an additional $5 and get 4 issues of Utne Reader for only $40.00 (USA only).

Or Bill Me Later and pay just $45 for 4 issues of Utne Reader!




Facebook Instagram Twitter