Drudge claims that when ABC handed this new tape over the the CIA, they redacted the final 15 minutes:
ABCNEWS withheld portions of an alarming new al Qaeda videotape which warns the next terror attack will dwarf 9/11 from the feds when they submitted the video for analysis, a top federal source tells the DRUDGE REPORT.
And what do these final minutes supposedly contain?
"What took place on September 11 was but the opening salvo of the global war on America and that our Lord willing, the magnitude and ferocity of what is coming your way will make you forget all about September 11," the man, whose face is covered by a headdress, warns in the video. "After decades of American tyranny, now it's your turn to die."
And what is the pretext of this attack supposed to be?
A top goverment source said from Washington that ABC withheld the final 15 minutes of the tape from the feds -- the portion of the tape where the man warns of retribution for Americans electing Bush and Cheney.
"You are guilty, guilty, guilty. You're as guilty as Bush and Cheney. You're as guilty as Rumsfeld and Ashcroft and Powell...," the man states.
He goes on to warn of an upcoming horror: "The streets will run with blood," and "America will mourn in silence" because they will be unable to count the number of the dead.
"People of America, that was the verdict now for the sentencing: as participants and partners in the crimes of the regime, you too shall pay the price for the blood that has been spilled."
Of course, the election of Bush and Cheney is a complete straw man. Before 9/11 Bush's foreign policy basically boiled down to, "You leave us alone and we'll leave you alone." That didn't stop the attacks in 2001. If al-Qaeda doesn't like Bush's current foreign policy, they have no one to blame but themselves; they pretty much forced his hand.
On another issue, why hasn't ABC aired the tape yet?
One ABC source, who demanded anonymity, said Thursday morning, the network was struggling to find a correct journalistic "balance" before airing any story on the video.
"This is not something you just throw out there while people are voting," the ABC source explained.
Because, of course, the American people aren't capable of watching the tape for themselves and figuring out what conclusions to draw. Of course not! They can only be allowed to see the tape after ABC has decided on the meta-contextual narrative that will surround such a viewing.
Earlier today Megan McArdle said:
It's no better to hold a story until after the election because of its political impact, than to hold one until right before the election because it will make a bigger bang. Nor would it be right to hold a tape telling Americans to elect Kerry, or else he'd kill them.
I would tend to agree with Megan on this. Holding on to a story because you're trying to keep it from affecting the elections is just as bad as holding a story in order to affect the elections. (Note the update to her post which indicates that the CIA may not have authenticated the tape after all.)
On another note entirely I'm not sure how the final 15 minutes could be withheld from the CIA without them noticing. Surely, to have any chance of determining whether the tape had been altered or enhanced, they would have demanded the original recording. I'd be shocked if ABC removed the last 15 minutes from their original. After all, if they did that, once they aired the wittheld footage, how could they prove it was authentic? And if they did remove the footage from the original, shouldn't the CIA have been able to tell? It's possible they might even be able to retrieve some of it.
Any way, that whole angle confuses me.