CAIRO, Egypt – The spokesman for the Al Qaeda terror group has threatened more attacks on Americans and Jews in a message published by the pan-Arab daily Al-Hayat Sunday.
"We confirm our continuation in working to attack Americans and Jews, and targeting them, both people and buildings," Al-Hayat quoted Sulaiman Abu Gaith as saying in an article that the newspaper said was published on the Web site www.alneda.com. The site could not be accessed on Sunday.
"What will come to the Americans, God willing, won't be less than what has come. America should be ready and on high alert and fasten the seat belts, as with the will of God, we will come to them from where they didn't expect," Abu Gaith was quoted as saying. The newspaper did not give Abu Gaith's whereabouts.
Gordon Johndroe, a spokesman for the White House Office of Homeland Security, said Sunday in Washington that he was not familiar with the report and could not comment on its credibility.
Speaking generally of such threats, however, he said: "We have said for some time that Al Qaeda is still interested in attacking the United States. We have been working since Sept. 11 to try to prevent and disrupt their organization from attacking the United States and also to strengthen our critical infrastructure and response capabilities against future attacks."
People purporting to speak for Al Qaeda have also made threats against Jews and Westerners since Sept. 11.
Last month, FBI Director Robert Mueller warned of a possibility of a new terrorist attack against the United States.
"There will be another terrorist attack. We will not be able to stop it," Mueller told a meeting of the National Association of District Attorneys on May 20. "It's something we all live with."
Abu Gaith said the United States was targeted because of "what it does in regions of the Islamic world," and of being "in the partnership with Jews, the head of corruption and decay ... the reason behind all the injustice and oppression that befell on Muslims."
He said all that Israel was doing in Palestinian territories for more than 50 years was with "American blessings."
He said U.S. policies in Iraq, Afghanistan and Somalia as well as in Sudan, the Philippines, Kashmir and Indonesia were against Muslims.
"After all of this, doesn't the prey have the right, while it is being slaughtered, to kick back?" he was quoted as saying.
Abu-Ghaith was stripped of his Kuwaiti citizenship in October after the former teacher and mosque preacher appeared in television broadcasts on behalf of Usama bin Laden, the prime suspect in the Sept. 11 attacks, threatening more attacks against Westerners.
Since the United States and its allies toppled Afghanistan's Taliban rulers, who harbored bin Laden and Al Qaeda, bin Laden and other Al Qaeda key figures remain at large.