Ayman al-Zawahri's 28-minute audio message was mainly a eulogy for slain Pakistani Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud, but he also took the opportunity to slam NATO member states operating in Afghanistan, including Germany, which he criticized for keeping troops there.
The recording comes after a series of Al Qaeda videos this past month, including several attacking Germany and threatening strikes against Berlin's military mission in Afghanistan. Those releases raised concerns among German authorities ahead of parliamentary elections which ended Sunday.
Al-Zawahri reserved special scorn for Obama, whom he has insulted in nearly every one of his messages since the latter's historic election as U.S. president.
Many experts believe that Al Qaeda is struggling in the face of Obama's popularity in the Muslim world, especially compared to his predecessor George W. Bush.
Obama publicly called for an Israeli freeze in settlement construction in order to restart the peace talks, but was rebuffed by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu last week.
"Here is Obama, the fraud, who pretended to be affected by the suffering of the Palestinians and then allows the settlements to flourish in the West Bank and in Jerusalem ... while pressing the weak (Arab) leaders to offer more concessions," al-Zawahri said.
U.S. officials have asked Arab countries to normalize relations with Israel to encourage the Jewish state to restart talks with the Palestinians.
"Is the reality of the criminal Obama now clear to us? Or do we need more crimes in Kabul, Baghdad, Mogadishu and Gaza to be sure of his criminal nature," he said.
Al-Zawahri's reference to events taking place just a week earlier indicate the urgency with which the message was recorded and posted as Al Qaeda hastens to point out any of Obama's shortcomings in the region."
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