CBNNews.com - In an hour-and-a-half long audio-taped message Wednesday night, Al-Qaeda Deputy Commander Ayman al-Zawahri vowed that with Allah's help, they would target Jews worldwide.
"We promise our Muslim brothers that we will do the best we can to harm Jews in Israel and the world over, with Allah's help and according to his command," said al-Qaeda's second in command.
Last week, he called on Muslims worldwide to strike Israeli and Jewish communities abroad to revenge Israel's counter-terror operation in the Gaza Strip in early March.
Al-Zawahri answered about 100 questions, submitted on various Islamic Web sites by al-Qaeda supporters, calling it the first installment of answers to more than 900 questions.
The deputy commander predicted that global jihad ("holy" war) would spread once the U.S. pulls out of Iraq.
"I expect the jihadi influence to spread after the Americans' exit from Iraq and to move toward Jerusalem," he said.
Al-Zawahri also assured his listeners that contrary to reports that Osama bin Laden was sick, he is doing well.
"Sheikh Osama bin Laden is in good health," he said. "The ill-intentioned always try to circulate false reports about him being sick," al-Zawahri said.
While denouncing the United Nations for "assisting the establishment of Israel," he also refuted criticism of al-Qaeda's brutality.
"We haven't killed the innocents, not in Baghdad nor in Morocco, nor in Algeria, nor anywhere else," he said, countering al-Qaeda's claim of masterminding the destruction of the World Trade Center in September 2001, in which nearly 3,000 people died.
"If there is any innocent who was killed in the Mujahideen's operations, then it was either an unintentional error or out of necessity," he said.
Al-Zawahri also predicted the downfall of Saudi Arabia for its "swimming against the tide of history" and called Egypt, the place of his birth, a "corrupt, rotten regime [that] cannot possibly continue."
As usual, the audio-tape could not be verified independently, but it was stamped by al-Sahab, al-Qaeda's media branch and was linked to many Islamic Web sites.
Sources: The Associated Press, The Jerusalem Post, Haaretz