Observations on the world today.

Friday, May 14, 2004

The Usual Suspect 

CNN Transcript:
O'BRIEN: Well, let me ask you this. You've had a chance to really listen to this tape and get a sense who might be responsible, just by deciphering, say, accents. And certainly, there in the Arab world, they're very attuned to that. And given the fact of who this may or may not be, does that have some effect on how it is being played?

NASR: Yes, and if you listen to these voices that we're hearing on Arab networks, Iraqis are condemning this execution. And they're saying these are foreigners. These are not Iraqis. They do not represent us and so forth.

Now, of course, the original claim was that Zarqawi is the actual man who performed this execution. Our experts listened to the accent, as you said, and they determined the accent is not Jordanian...

O'BRIEN: He is a Jordanian who is working supposedly, allegedly, at the behest of al Qaeda in Iraq. So go ahead.

NASR: Right, he is very close to bin Laden, and works, you're right, as an agent of al Qaeda in Iraq. Now, the accent is not Jordanian so that takes the Jordanian element out of the story immediately.

O'BRIEN: Interesting. All right, now one final thought here. You did a very careful translation of your own, of the statement. And in it, you see no reference to al Qaeda. And yet the official U.S. government translation does. Explain how that happened.

NASR: Oh, I find it very interesting, because out of the blue, there is a mention of al Qaeda on the U.S. government translation. It says: "Does al Qaeda need any further excuses?" Any speaker of the Arabic language is going to notice a difference between the word al Qaeda, which means "the base," and al qaed, which means "the one sitting, doing nothing."
The first thing I noticed when this story broke was that the government was saying al Qaeda right off the bat. However, according to the story, the killers had said that they had offered to trade Berg for some Abu Ghraib prisoners, and I didn't think that sounded like an al Qaeda tactic. I also noticed that when the Iraqi ambassador-to-be was on Wolf Blitzer the other day, she said that the voice on the tape did not sound like Zarqawi. But here is an observation that I don't think anyone has made. According to US intelligence:
May 2002 Zarqawi traveled to Iraq. He had his leg amputated and had a prosthetic limb to replace it.
Now, I haven't seen the video. I understand that it is all over the Internet, but I don't want to see it. However, I have a relative with a prosthetic leg. You can tell whenever he moves that he has a false limb. He has to compensate for it all the time. Is there any evidence of a prosthesis in the video? It doesn't seem like it in the still pictures.


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