A day after the United States observed the tenth anniversary of 9/11, a taped message from Osama bin Laden surfaced, four months after his death.
The monitoring group SITE Intelligence said a 62-minute video titled "The Dawn of Imminent Victory," which also includes a speech by bin Laden's successor Ayman al-Zawahiri, was posted online.
The private American entity said the footage was found in Bin Laden's house in Abbottabad, Pakistan, and had already been released by the U.S. but without its soundtrack.
Strangely, Bin Laden chose to address the Americans, shifting from the usual appeal to Muslims only, warning them against "falling as slaves" to the control of major corporations and "Jewish money capital," SITE said.
Bin Laden also gave Americans reading tips by promoting the book "Obama's War" by Bob Woodward, which details internal debates over U.S. military decision-making, and criticised President Barack Obama's campaign slogan "Yes, we can" as yet another lie.
It is not clear yet why the al-Qaida leader chose to address Americans, and what he hoped to achieve. Clearly, any expectations his speech would strike a chord with Obama's detractors were delusional and demonstrated the level of confusion that reigns throughout the organisation itself.
The tape indicates that with fading relevance and popularity in the Muslim world and after failing to capitalise or play any kind of role in the Arab Spring, al-Qaida appears ideologically lost.
Zawahiri might now be al-Qaida's number one but he certainly lacks bin Laden's popularity within the organisation and also struggles to fill the ideological void.
In the video, Zawahiri makes a long speech about key events of the past year including the revolutions in the Arab world and the death of bin Laden.
"Zawahiri ... declared that contrary to what is reported in the media, al-Qaida supports the revolutions and hopes it will establish true Islam and sharia-based governance," SITE said.
"The popular revolutions, he stated, are a form of defeat for the United States, just as the 9/11 attacks and its alleged lack of success in Afghanistan and Iraq were also defeats."
Zawahiri also praised his predecessor as a fighter who had sacrificed everything for his struggle for Muslims.
"America is denying the fact that it is not facing individuals or groups but the whole ummah (Muslim community) of Islam. After the martyrdom of Sheikh Osama, the Islamic face of the revolutions was shown," he said.
"America's arrogant nature will push it to deny the facts that it is facing a rising ummah and that it may be a cause of defeat and its fall, with permission from Allah."
Zawahiri, in hiding since the beginning of the war on terror, was only shown in a still picture in the video, which was released by al-Qaida's media arm, as-Sahab, and posted on jihadist Web sites Monday, SITE said.
In his address Zawahiri sounds like a defeated leader and his rant resembles the ones of Muammar Gaddafi, who despite being in hiding still continues to make delusional claims about recapturing power. It is not clear what the new al-Qaida leader calls a revolution as bin Laden's death seemed to have very little impact in the Arab world, marking a definite decline in influence, and paved the way for internal struggles to weaken the organisation.