Query to the moral equivalence crowd: when was the last time you heard of a Christian cleric being influenced by Eric Rudolph or Tim McVeigh to go out and wage war against unbelievers? How did this Muslim cleric miss all the peaceful teachings of the Qur’an that we hear so much about? From AP, :
JAKARTA, Indonesia — “I met with Usama bin Laden frequently in Afghanistan and heard him speak about waging war against America and its allies,” said Mohammad Rais, giving testimony in the trial of alleged terrorist leader Abu Bakar Bashir.
“We saw the Marriott attack as a message from Usama bin Laden,” he said.
Bashir has been charged with heading Al Qaeda’s alleged affiliate in Southeast Asia, the Jemaah Islamiyah group, and of inciting his followers to take part in the 2002 Bali bombings that killed 202 people, and the Marriott attack that left 12 dead.
Rais also said that bin Laden offered Bashir refuge in Afghanistan if “he didn’t feel comfortable” in Indonesia. The message was given to Hambali, the jailed militant accused of leading Jemaah Islamiyah, who gave it to Rais.
Rais, who in May was sentenced to seven years in jail for helping plan the Marriott attack and transport explosives used in the blast, gave the message to Bashir in 2001 when he visited the cleric’s Islamic boarding school in Solo.