January 14th, 2009
03:32 PM ET

Tape shows Gaza conflict 'big deal' to bin Laden

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/WORLD/meast/01/14/binladen.message/art.bin.laden.gi.jpg caption="Osama bin Laden, in an undated photo, apparently taped a message calling for jihad against Israel."]

Peter Bergen
CNN National Security Analyst

Osama bin Laden's release of an audio message denouncing Israel's military offensive in Gaza signals the al Qaeda leader's priorities, CNN national security analyst Peter Bergen says.

On the tape, which became public Wednesday, bin Laden calls for jihad, or holy war, against Israel in response to its military campaign aimed at stopping Hamas rocket attacks.

It's unknown when the tape was made because the time lag between recording a bin Laden message and releasing it is usually about two weeks, said Bergen, a fellow at the New America Foundation in Washington and author of "The Osama bin Laden I Know: An Oral History of al Qaeda's Leader."

Bergen answered questions about the latest message from bin Laden.

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Filed under: Osama bin Laden • Peter Bergen • War on Terror
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