Al-Qaida's deputy leader mocked President Bush's plan to send 21,000 more troops to Iraq, challenging him to send "the entire army" and vowing insurgents will defeat them, according to a new videotape released Monday by a U.S. group that tracks al-Qaida messages.
The Washington-based SITE Institute said it had intercepted the video from Ayman al-Zawahri, which had not yet been posted on Islamic militant Web sites, where his messages are usually posted. SITE did not elaborate on how it received the message.
Al-Zawahri said the U.S. strategy for Iraq, outlined by Bush in a Jan. 9 speech, was doomed to fail.
"I ask him, why send 20,000 (troops) only - why not send 50 or 100 thousand? Aren't you aware that the dogs of Iraq are pining for your troops' dead bodies?" said al-Zawahri in the footage released by SITE, which assesses and analyzes intelligence related to terrorism.
"So send your entire army to be annihilated at the hands of the mujahideen (holy warriors) to free the world from your evil," he said, "because Iraq, land of the Caliphate and Jihad, is able to bury ten armies like yours, with Allah's help and power."