CRAWFORD, Texas – President Bush renewed his vow Friday to capture Usama bin Laden and bring him to justice.
At a news conference at his ranch in Crawford, Texas, Bush said that the Al Qaeda terrorist ringleader would not be able to elude U.S. forces for long.
"He's not in charge of Afghanistan anymore," Bush said. "He's not the parasite that's invaded the host. ... Now, he's maybe in control of a cave. He's on the run. We're going to get him running and keep him running and bring him to justice."
Bush also dismissed the latest bin Laden videotape as terrorist propaganda.
"I didn't watch it all," Bush said of the tape, which aired Wednesday and Thursday. "I saw snippets of it on TV. Who knows when it was made."
In excerpts from the tape aired on the Arabic TV network Al-Jazeera, bin Laden said he was speaking three months after the Sept. 11 attacks and two months after the United States started striking Afghanistan, which was Oct. 7. He also mentioned a Nov. 16 U.S. airstrike in Khost, Afghanistan, as having occurred several days before.
Bin Laden hailed the Sept. 11 hijackings as a "blessed attack against the international infidels."
Experts at the Pentagon are looking over the latest tape for information that wouldn't be obvious from a casual viewing, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld said Thursday.
The president said he does not know whether bin Laden is still in control of Al Qaeda.
"If he's alive he's on the run, and you don't need to worry about whether or not we're going to get him because we are," Bush said. "It's just a matter of time. I mean, I've read reports where he's dyed his hair red. It's not going to stop us from finding him."
Asked if he fears bin Laden's terrorist network is still targeting Americans, Bush said: "I hope 2002 is a year of peace, but I'm also realistic. I know full well that bin Laden and his cronies would like to harm America again."
Appearing with war commander Gen. Tommy Franks, Bush said U.S. forces would stay in Afghanistan for as long as it takes to rid the nation of Al Qaeda terrorists and ensure future political stability.
"The world must know that this administration will not blink in the face of danger and will not tire when it comes to completing the missions that we said we would do," Bush said.
The U.S. military has 70 Taliban and Al Qaeda prisoners in custody and the Pentagon is making plans to send them to a U.S. Navy base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
The base is the "least worst place" to hold detainees, Rumsfeld said Thursday, suggesting there are few other options for imprisoning the men.
Rumsfeld said it could take weeks to prepare the site, where U.S. interrogators will continue pressing their prisoners for more information on the whereabouts of key Taliban and Al Qaeda leaders, most of whom are still missing and unaccounted for.
Eight of the prisoners, including American John Walker Lindh, were being held on the Navy's amphibious assault ship USS Peleliu in the Arabian Sea.
Bush said Lindh, accused of fighting with the Taliban, was "well- berthed" on the ship.
"Walker made a terrible decision and our system is such that he'll have proper justice," Bush said. "He's working with the enemy and we'll see how the courts deal with that."
The detainees are being questioned about the whereabouts of bin Laden, and to determine if they should be brought to trial. A number of those prisoners may face U.S. military tribunals, though Rumsfeld said the military has made no plans to hold military tribunals at the Guantanamo Bay base.
Bush has authorized military tribunals to try terrorist suspects from other countries, but defense officials said Thursday Rumsfeld has not decided how, where or even if those tribunals would take place.
A draft of proposed Bush administration rules for military tribunals states that a unanimous vote of a tribunal's military officers would be required to impose a death sentence on a foreign terror suspect, an official said Friday on condition of anonymity.
Bush said discussions continue and no decisions had been made about the tribunal process, but that "our system will be more fair than the system of bin Laden and the Taliban. That is for certain."
Meanwhile, the mother of Zacarias Moussaoui, the only person charged with direct involvement in the Sept. 11 attacks, said Friday he has told her he has proof of his innocence and she does not think he is responsible.
When asked on Fox News Channel's Fox & Friends if she thought her son should die if found guilty of Sept. 11 participation, Aicha el-Wafi said she opposes the death penalty.
"No human being deserves to die," el-Wafi said of her son. "God did not give us life for people to take it away."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.