LONDON, Nov. 28 (UPI) -- Al-Qaida second-in-command Ayman al-Zawahiri says the global financial crisis was caused by the United States' war on Muslims and the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.
Speaking on a new video posted on militant Islamic Web sites Thursday and monitored in London, Zawahiri said the world's financial turmoil stemmed from al-Qaida's 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center, The Daily Telegraph reported.
"This crisis is one of … the series of American economic hemorrhages after the strikes of September 11 … And these … will continue as long as the foolish American policy of wading in Muslim blood continues," the Egyptian cleric says in the video.
Zawahiri also said Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai was weak and that U.S. gains in tamping down violence in Iraq were only temporary, predicting that Sunni Arab Awakening Councils, largely credited with helping to counter al-Qaida's moves in Iraq, would be rejected by the Shiite-dominated government, the Telegraph reported.
He taunted U.S. President George Bush, daring him to invade the group's base and saying, "I challenge you, if you are really a man, to send the entire American army to Pakistan and the tribal regions for it to end up in hell."