‘Osama wanted to rename al Qaeda to gain popularity’ | Pakistan Today

‘Osama wanted to rename al Qaeda to gain popularity’

Al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden wanted to change the organisation’s name as it was experiencing a marketing problem because of the lack of “a religious element” in it, leading the West to win the public relations fight, The Telegraph reports.
According to the documents received from bin Laden’s hideout in Abbottabad by the US Navy Seals, Osama considered changing al Qaeda’s name to make a fresh beginning like that of Blackwater, Valujet and Philip Morris.
Bin Laden wrote in a letter that the problem with the name ‘al Qaeda’ was that it lacked a religious element, something necessary to convince Muslims worldwide that they were in a holy war with America.
He suggested that a name like ‘Taifat al-Tawhed Wal-Jihad’, meaning Monotheism and Jihad Group, or ‘Jama’at I’Adat al-Khilafat al-Rashida’, meaning Restoration of the Caliphate Group, would suffice, the report says.
Bin Laden lamented that the group’s full name, al Qaeda al-Jihad, for The Base of Holy War, had become short-handed as simply al Qaeda, chopping off the ‘jihad word’. This, he believed, was allowing the West to “claim deceptively that it was not at war with Islam”, and suggested that Qaeda should start popularising its full name.
Another problem he faced was that the group was killing too many Muslims, which was bad for business, and that all his old comrades were dead and he barely knew their replacements.
On Wednesday, US President Barack Obama had said, “The information that we recovered from bin Laden’s compound shows al Qaeda under enormous strain.”
“Bin Laden expressed concern that al Qaeda had been unable to effectively replace senior terrorists that had been killed and that al Qaeda has failed in its effort to portray America as a nation at war with Islam, thereby draining more widespread support,” he had added.



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