You are on page 1of 18

Al-Jazeera interview with Dr.

Aymen Al-Zawahiri in 1998

This is a transcript of the interview of Al-Jazeera with Dr. Aymen AlZawahiri that was conducted in December 1998 during the rule of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan with the former Al-Jazeera bureau chief in Pakistan, Jamal Ismail. The interview was conducted in a time when there was a crisis in the Qatari Egyptian relations, but after the relations returned to normalcy, the administration of Al-Jazeera refused to broadcast it. The Arabic transcript was published in the book of Jamal Ismail Bin Laden, AlJazeera and me, where he criticized the double standards of the Al-Jazeera channel. Also Al-Jihad Group has published an audio version of the interview. *** Jamal Ismail: Dr. Aymen Al-Zawahiri now you head the Egyptian Al-Jihad Group, first give us a profile about yourself. Who is Dr. Aymen AlZawahiri? Aymen Al-Zawahiri: . Aymen Al-Zawahiri was born in 1951 in the province of Al-Giza in Egypt. My father is Dr. Mohammed Rabie Al-Zawahiri used to work a science professor in the Ain Shams University. Im from a family who most its members are from Ulema of Al-Azhar. Our great grandfather is Sheikh Mohammed Al-Hassan Al-Zawahiri, was the Sheikh of Al-Azhar in the thirties. My mother belongs to the family of Azzam, and its a family from a

famous Arabian tribe that migrated to Egypt. My grandfather from my mother side is Dr. Abdurrahman Azzam, the well known scholar and writer, who was the first to translate the poetry of Mohammed Iqbal to the Arabic language. I was raised in that atmosphere, I had my civil education until 1968 after Al-Naksa (Six Days war), then I entered the faculty of medicine and graduated in 1974. I got my Master degree in surgery in 1978. During that time the Egyptian university was teeming with events, after the October (1973) war and the Islamic groups in Egypt were established in it. After that I applied to the doctoral studies, but the events didnt give me time to finish it since I was forced to leave the country. I was arrested in 1981 and stayed in prison for three years, where I know the real face of the regime. After that I entered the famous Al-Jihad case in 8718 and the prosecution demanded my execution, but Allah Subhanah wa Taala determined that I be ruled with only three years in prison. After that I got out from prison, and then I left Egypt after three months somehow. After that I toured in different countries until I reached Pakistan and there I worked with the Afghan Mujahidin in surgical work to help the Afghan Mujahidin medically. And I had went to Pakistan before in 1980/81 where I worked as a doctor and surgeon with the mujahidin and since then, I have been roaming through the countries for the jihad cause in Egypt and the Islamic World. J.I: Regarding the Egyptian Islamic Jihad Group, when was it established, what are its goals and what from these goals have been achieved so far? A. Z: Islamic Jihad Group was established around 1966. We were a group of students in high school. We began to establish groups in the wake of the regime strike to the Ikwan (Muslim Brotherhood) in 1965. We began to know about Islamic movement and what happened to it. We reached to a conclusion that this Egyptian regime is an anti-Islamic regime and there will be no good from it, since it led to the occurrence of historical disasters to the land, on Egypt in particular and the Arabs in general. This regime have received this country and its borders was from southern Sudan to the Mediterranean Sea, and in 1967 half the country was occupied and its army was destroyed in Yemen. So we reached to a conclusion that there is no way to rescue except with resisting this regime and return to Islam. Since then we are working to these principles, which is that this regime in Egypt should be

changed, because there is no way but to change this regime through force after it reached to this level of corruption and wasting the country. The activity remained so until 1981 and what happened in them of big events of rounding up of the politicians in general and the Islamic stream in particular in September 1981 and then what followed after that from the assassination of Sadat and the events of Upper Egypt, which was the Islamic Intifada in 1981 and it was followed with a detention campaign, we were touched by these detentions. This is a summary of the events until the death of Sadat, who with his assassination erupted the cause of jihad in Egypt, and the cause of resisting the Jews in Egypt erupted because Khalid Al-Islambouli rahimahullah, when asked why did he kill Sadat? His reply was clear and frank: because he was an agent for the Jews in Egypt. Because he abused the Muslim Ulema in Egypt. May Allah reward Khalid Al-Islambouli and his brothers Mohammed Abdulsalam, Atta Tayil and Abdulhamid Abdulsalam, they have erupted the cause of jihad in Egypt. This jihad that clashed with the Jews and their agents in Egypt and the defenders of the Jews in Egypt, which is the ruling secular military regime in Egypt. The events and history have proved that the only power that is capable of stopping this regime and resisting the Zionist tide in Egypt is the Islamic power, so with the assassination of Anwar Sadat and the events of Upper Egypt the cause of resisting the Jews in Egypt erupted. And it was clear Image to the eyewitness, on one side the treachery of the Egyptian regime tot the Jews and Americans and on the other side the Islamic movement. Of course, since then the events are erupting in Egypt such as the revival of the Al-Jihad case and many of the Islamic causes in Egypt ended with the arrest of its members and their entrance to prison and staying there for a long period, but from 1981 and the events are renewing, reviving and erupting in Egypt. The Islamic forces reflect the Egyptian street, which is the only power in Egypt. And the Egyptian regime on the other side. The Islamic forces hold what no other political power has, they have 60000 detainees, 108 among them are ruled with the capital punishment in military courts, until now about 88 of them were executed, but there are many cases of murder, enforced disappearance, death under torture, extended provisions and violating the honor of women. There is no political organization or

stream in Egypt that has this long breath, despite that the Islamic forces in Egypt is still capable of combating the regime and America so far considers its most demonized enemies. From 1981 to date and the Islamic cause is erupting in Egypt. I consider the events of 1981, especially what was done by Khalid Al-Islambouli and his brothers rahimahumullah as an explosion to the confrontation with the Jews, and revival of the jihad cause against the Jews and the Americans. So this cause emerged among the Muslim youth now and it became an everyday life issue in Egypt. After we left Egypt and arrived in Afghanistan. There was an opportunity in the Afghan jihad that gave another push to the jihad and Islamic work in the Arab world. In Afghanistan we gained organizational, political and military experience that we couldnt gain in any other country. This was an open Jihadi arena, where the Moslem youth who were eager to jihad from all over the Islamic World and practiced jihad, and with the participation of these youth the super power that controlled huge areas of the world and which was considered the strongest ground force in the world fell. In the participation of those youth they saw this live experience by themselves and their own eyes, and saw how the super power fell and that there is no super power, so this youth came out from Afghanistan and were full of hope in confronting the powers that were called Super and it fell from his mind the so called of the super powers, and was aware of the frailty of these super powers because he confronted it by himself in the field. The stage of the Afghanistan is a very rich stage, which we benefited it from very much in Egypt and it began to escalate abruptly, and the regime was forced to show its ugly, grim face and true image. So it began campaigns of detentions, torture and oppression. This is attested by human rights organizations and the records of the U.S. Department of State, even the officials of the regime themselves acknowledge that. So the regime was forced to take the policy of severe oppression and repression against them, against the Islamic forces that refuse the treachery towards America and Israel and demand to return to Islam and the Islamic identity of the Ummah, as the only savior to the Ummah from the state of debasement and humiliation that it has reached. After that, when we were forced to leave to Pakistan after the campaigns of detention against the Arab youth who did jihad in Afghanistan, we kept these experiences and

strong connections and practiced in Egypt the Dawah, Jihadi and political action. The result of these relations is that the mujahid youth formed a political and ideological awareness that this Ummah is being fought because its a Muslim Ummah. There is a new crusade that wants this Ummah, and wants its wealth and land, and wants to obliterate the political will and ideological uniqueness of this Ummah. The Muslim youth came out with the political awareness that the biggest enemy that is causing all these scourges and disasters is the Jewish Crusader alliance, and that it biggest criminals are present in the White House and Israel, because they are the ones who are moving the Egyptian regime, and they are moving the other Arab regimes to strike Islamic movement. This awareness led to many connections, consulting and joint work with the brothers and its fruit was the last stage that we are going through now in the Jihad Group and many of the other mujahid groups and the groups that are working to restore the Islamic identity to the Ummah, which is unity to resist this new crusade attack, maybe the creation of the International Islamic Front for Jihad Against Jews and Crusaders will be an organization that we want from it to emphasis this soul that was an awareness, understanding and spirit that goes through this Ummah, and it becomes administrative and organizational templates that organize this Islamic awakening. This is in brief a summary about Al-Jihad Group and what it has achieved until now. J.I: You spoke about the beginning of the Jihadi awareness in Egypt, and that it was to resist the Jews entrance to Egypt but until now Al-Jihad Group in Egypt and in the framework of its armed action we didnt see or rarely we would hear from it about operations against the Jews, but rather it operations were limited against the Egyptian regime or some figures and officers in the police service or the Egyptian government. Isnt that considered undermining of the State of that could practice one day its role in the resistance of normalization with the Jews or resisting the Jewish tide in Egypt? A. Z: This is conclusion isnt based on a correct introduction. The Egyptian regime cannot resist the Jews or the Americans. The Egyptian regime works for the interest of the Jews and Americans. When we strike the regime in Egypt we strike it because its a regime that prevents the Islamic Sharia. Its

sells the country to Israel and the Americans. Its a regime that began the peace agreements with Israel. Its the regime that ended the state of war between Egypt and Israel. Its the first Arab regime that opened an Israeli embassy in Cairo. It is the one which entered to Egypt the American bases. It is the regime that conducting the normalization (with Israel) in Egypt and wants from the Egyptian people to forget something called Palestine. So with this the Egyptian regime is a strong and major tool in the hand of Israel to strike the strongest Arab power, which is Egypt that can hold in the face of Israel. And when we are resisting the regime, we were resisting it in that meaning and we still resist it in that meaning. And we increased in our cooperation with our brothers in the other groups. Thats regarding the second half of the question, but the first half which is why we didnt see for you military operations against the Jews in Egypt: we sought for operations against the Jews but the will of Allah Subhanah wa Taala determined that it werent accomplished, and the most famous of them is the Khan Al-Khalili case which 100 brothers were accused in it and three of them have been executed recently. This operation was primarily against the Israeli tourists in Egypt but regime doesnt dare to mention that in its statements. So this awareness, which is that jihad in Egypt should directed against the regime and against America and the Israel, is a stable awareness and a proof for that is that we entered and participated in the Islamic International Front against the Crusaders and the Jews, so if we didnt have that awareness we wouldnt have participated in that front. J.I: Regarding the operations against the foreign tourists in Egypt: there were several military operations against foreign tourists in Egypt, especially the incident at Luxor. There were several statements that the Al-Jihad Group was behind such operations. Dont you see that such operations affect one way or another on the general income for the Egyptian ordinary people and the economy of the country and undermine the foundations of a State that tens of millions of the Egyptian people are benefiting from? A. Z: First, there is a configurable objection on the question. We as a group didnt attack the foreign tourists in Egypt. And there is a thematic section in the question, which is what is practiced by the members of the Islamic Groups in Egypt. In fact, you in the media hear what is published from one

side, which is the government and its point of view. Regarding the Islamic point of view, even if we didnt participate in these operations but we totally understand, which is that the youth consider the presence of the foreign tourists in the Egypt is an assault on the Muslims in Egypt. Because the Jewish, American and French tourist and foreigners in general after they stroke Iraq, bombardment the Muslims in Lebanon, and broke the legs and hands of the children in occupied Palestine, they make Egypt a nightclub or resort and comes to spend his time in it. We say to him or the youth say to him that our country isnt a country for enjoying or picnicking, especially your likes and the youth declared repeatedly that we dont want this kind of tourists in Egypt. We dont want tourist with low morals in Egypt. We dont want tourists who assault us repeatedly and after they finish their assault, they come to picnic and enjoy in Egypt. J.I: Do you mean that most of the tourists are from the Western forces, especially the Americans, that bomb Iraq and other Islamic countries? A. Z: No... in General the tourists in Egypt are from the states that supported the establishment of Israel, most of the Western nations from the beginning these nations recognize, support and aid Israel, and support the American policies against Iraq, when hundreds of the Iraqi people were killed in the global American assault. Forces from these nations participated in the alliance against our Ummah. There is an enmity from the people in Egypt towards these nations that participated in the assault against our Ummah. The youth said to these tourists dont come to our land because to conducted an assault against our lands, and because you practice morals and behaviors that we as Muslims dont except to be practiced among us and against Egypt. Dont come to us because to aid the economy of the government that is working for the interest of Israel. This aid doesnt go to the Egyptian citizen, but rather to the high officials and the state of corruption in Egypt. Because of you there is state of prostitution, corruption and gambling established in Egypt. This state that sucks the blood of the Muslims and the weak ones and forces them to immorality because of the poverty that they live in. We dont want all this money. The youth in Egypt warned once, twice, thrice and fourth. Now the battle is between the Islamic forces and the regime that is allied Israel and America in Egypt. We consider the regime

illegitimate and the visas that it gives to the tourists illegitimate. Despite of that those tourists take the visas from the regime that the Muslim youth consider illegitimate. John Major said that he supports the regime in Egypt against the Islamic Groups, so the tourist that comes to Egypt is a combatant and is not a tourist. He is a tourist that supports the regime, recognizes its legitimacy and pays money to strengthen it. Any country in the world considers that it has the right to shoot who enters through the borders illegally. So those youth from this point committed these operations. We even if we didnt conduct these operations, but we understand the motives totally. Add to that, what is the youth suffering from? This youth is suffering from a terror, oppression and torture that Egypt never saw in its history. It has been acknowledged by the Egyptian courts and forensic and it has been acknowledged by the Egyptian journalists, and a person like Adil Hamoda in Rose Al-Youssef says that in Egypt there are 30,000 detainee and tens of torture operations. Those youth who are subjugated to this have to stop the torture against their brothers. What happened in Luxor and wasnt published or referred to in the media is that the youth said: We conducted an operation to revenge our brothers who died under torture in Egypt. And they were intending that it be a hostage operation to liberate their brothers in the Egyptian prisons and to save Dr. Omar Abdurrahman may Allah free him from captivity. What happened is those brothers who kidnapped the tourists didnt fire at them; it was the Egyptian regime that didnt care about the tourists and the brothers, so it fired at the tourists and killed them. The same thing that happened during the operation of liberating the kidnapped plane in Cyprus. The Egyptian Special Forces were the ones who stormed the plane and killed the passengers, and then the regime said that the Palestinians were the ones who killed the passengers. We understand these motives and accuse the regime of killing these tourists. J.I: You mentioned in the beginning to the declaration of the establishment of the International Islamic Front for Jihad Against Jews and Crusaders, but until now there is very little that is known about this Front, it principles, what it wants and what has it achieved so far. Can you give a summary about the front and its goals?

A. Z: The International Islamic Front has its Charter. This Charter has permanent features, which urges the Moslem Ummah to do jihad to repel the American and Jewish aggression against it, which plunders the riches of the Ummah and occupies its land. This aggression that occupied its land and its most holy land, Al-Quds, Grand Mosque in Mecca, and Grand Mosque in Medina. This Front works to implement the Sharia of Allah Subhanah wa Taala on His land and the Front seeks to mobilize all the Islamic forces to save the Islamic sanctities that are lost. This is the main goal of the Front and its main work and the Front is eager to unite the Ummah and incite it to this main goal. J.I: What has the front achieved so far? A. Z: I cannot say what the Front has achieved so far and during its brief period of life. But I can say that the Front has a sweeping popular acceptance and wide support, and a proof of this are the demonstrations that happened in Pakistan to support it. Especially when there were rumors about the arrest of the sheikh Osama bin Laden, wide demonstrations erupted in Pakistan and demonstrations erupted in many Islamic countries when Afghanistan was bombed. And among the targets that were bombed locations allegedly that the Arab brothers were present there who were affiliated to the Front. This sweeping popular sympathy is a result of fruitful work that has been done by the Front to unite the Ummah and for a huge goal like that nine months or a year isnt a long period. J.I: Recently, there was an American British attack on Iraq, but there was a notice that there was an absence of any strong response to the missile and air bombardment on Iraq. Also there wasnt any response from the International Islamic Front to this bombardment. A. Z: I will be responding now, if my brothers in the Front allow me to speak in its name. (Here Dr. Aymen Al-Zawahiri from sheikh Osama bin Laden to speak about the Front since sheikh Osama was considered its official spokesman and he was sitting with us when we conducted the interview) this aggression against Iraq cannot be repelled with slogans or demonstrations or shouts, it can only be repelled to treat America and Israel

in the same way it treats the Arabs and Moslems. America killed civilians, children and women, in Iraq. Israel killed civilians in Qana, Sabra and Shatila, Deir Yassin and Bahar Al-Baqar school. America is starving the Iraqi people and killing the children, plundering our money and occupying our land. There is no way but to treat it in the same way. Those people dont have any morals. Those people stroke the civilians in Hiroshima and Nagasaki after Japan declared its surrender. Those people only know the logic of force. The response of the Islamic Front is to call the Ummah to stand with it with the same force to repel the aggression. The Front have issued a new statement which is a call to all who can carry weapons or can do anything against America to stand with the Front. This is a call to all the Muslims and the Islamic movements from the Islamic International Front against the Crusaders and the Jews, to unite and resist this aggression. J.I: Last summer you came under the American missile strikes in Khost and the areas close to it. You and sheikh Osama bin Laden were accused of conducting attacks against American interests in the world. After the American British attack against Iraq. Do you expect an air or missile attack on the Taliban regions or the places where you are located? A. Z: We expect an attack at any moment. We expect to be killed at any moment. I personally believe that we lived too much. We want to die for the sake of Allah. The aggression that happened against the camps in Afghanistan wasnt because of a direct reason to Nairobi and Dar es Salaam, the reason is that the Front said Haram to what America considers Haram, which is kill the Americans as they kill you. So America became crazy and considered the Front conducted what America considers a crime. That is why it stroke the camps before any conviction or formal investigation was issued from the American administration about the two events, because there has been a leaking to the American intelligence that there is a meeting in Khost, as there was a leaking about false news about the presence of chemical weapons in Khartoum. So it stroke quickly and we expect that there wont be any result for the investigation so that America can kill those participating in the Front. We expect this will be repeated without proof or excuse or any reason and we know this matter before the events of Nairobi and Dar es Salaam and that there is an American plot related to the

assassination and killing. We will follow it and welcome it and we say that the Americans entered a war and the Americans are engaged in that. They fought before in Korea and in Vietnam, but in this decade they are engaged with the Moslems. And for the Americans to be engaged with the Moslems they will know how will we fight? And how will we be martyred? J.I: There is a talk about the presence of relations between the Egyptian AlJihad Group with the governments of Iran, Iraq and Sudan. What is your true stance from these governments and your relations with it, if there was any relation? A. Z: Al-Jihad Group is a group of mujahidin that are chased all over the world and I dont think that any government other than the government of Afghanistan will welcome us, and the Taliban have shown stances that we havent seen before in the modern history. Our relation with Iran and Iraq or other are all illusions. But the truth is that the Egyptian government has a clear treacherous relation with America and Israel. The facts is that in Egypt there are American bases, the West Cairo airport, the Qina airport, there are Egyptian facilities in all the Egyptian airports and sea ports for the American forces. The B52 warplanes went out from Egypt and stroke Iraq. There is an Israeli embassy in Cairo and an FBI and CIA office in Cairo. There are 60000 detainees in Egypt because of their Islamic trend and refusal to Israel. These are the facts and because of this the Egyptian security agencies seek to kidnap people from Croatia, Albania and Thailand, and send them to Egypt. These are the facts, but regarding accusing us of having relations with other governments, these are illusions, or as they say she claims that I'm sick when she's the one with chest pains. The traitors are accusing others with treachery. They are the real traitors who are working with America and Israel, who have gathered the people in Sharm El Sheikh to resist the Moslem youth who us resisting Israel. These are the facts. J.I: The Egyptian government insists on accusing Sudan of giving shelter to the centers to the Egyptian Islamic groups and facilitate its training inside the Sudanese territory and then facilitating their crossing and smuggling to Egypt.

A. Z: Brother, this Egyptian government wont stop trying to draw attention away from the real problem, which is resembled in the presence of a struggle between the popular forces and especially by the Islamic forces and the regime, this is the real problem. And the government puts pressure on any side that it thinks that it can help in that. But is putting pressure on Sudan and expelling sheikh Osama bin Laden from it stopped the operations from Egypt? Or after putting pressure on Sudan were the detainees released, the Emergency Law canceled and stopped the executions in Egypt? The case is a full case, which is the treachery of the Egyptian regime to the Americans and its fight to Islam. This is the problem. J.I: This will lead us to speak about the internal situation in Egypt. The regime says that it began to practice freedoms and gave freedom to the opposition and allowed for the presence opposition parties and opposition newspapers, while you insist to practice what it calls violence and you describe the armed Jihadi action. First, what is the real situation in Egypt? How does the Islamic streams live in Egypt? Are there mediations between the government and the Islamic groups in Egypt? And what is your stance from these mediations? A. Z: First, regarding the first half of the question there is a big prison called Egypt, there are 60000 detainee, and interior minister admitted of the presence of tens of thousands of detainees. Finally they released 700 repentant, and they said we released 5000. So how many didnt repent if only 5000 repented? J.I: Excuse me, what is the concept of repentance that the government is speaking about? A. Z: According to the state, the concept of repentance is that the detainee says that I no longer believe in violence and armed action. And those who the state said that they are from the repentant, due to the policy of arbitrary arrest the state arrests anyone who has relation and doesnt have a relation, then they come to those poor ones who have no relation to the events, and say to them we will release you if you said we have repented and no longer believe in violence. Those didnt practice anything of what the state calls

violence to repent from it, in fact this is a play that the state has been doing from some time. Or why dont they release people whom the judiciary have ruled to them with innocence. There are people who spent 15 years in the prisons of Egypt and are still under detention despite the end of their sentence. There are sentences for wholesale release but there are people who are still detained for ten years in Egypt without any charge brought against them. Let them release those people if really there is freedom in Egypt and respect to the law that they put. The judiciary in Egypt condemned the government several times in the case 18/264 that is called the Grand AlJihad case. The government has been condemned and the judge said: Egypt doesnt have the Islamic Sharia and there is torture that caused permanent disabilities. There is a corruption that is spread in the media and press that follow the Egyptian government. The persistent of the republic as the military ruler signed on this and approved by himself on a sentence that condemned him of not implementing the Sharia and the spread of corruption in Egypt. This is not our words, but its rather the words of the Amnesty International and the Egyptian human rights organization. The issue is why all this injustice is practiced. The government practices this policy of protecting the Israeli expansion in Egypt and the region. Israel realizes that Egypt which has a heavy population size is the obstacle on its way so it has to suppress this power in any way. The government says that it restored the freedoms. I challenge the Egyptian government now, a challenge that the Egyptian government dont dare to answer. Let them end the banned from travel lists, let them end the state of emergency, release the detainees, allow the freedom of gatherings, the freedom of strikes, and restore all the rights that they claim. And they will see how will the sweeping popular tide sweep them? The Egyptian government dont dare to stop the suppression measures, because the day the government stops this will be the day of eliminating this government. I demand channel Al-Jazeera to transfer this challenge to the Egyptian government. I challenge them to leave the freedoms in Egypt and they will see themselves that the result of this freedom is eliminating this puppet regime in Egypt because of the Jewish policy in the region.

Regarding the mediations, we Alhamdulillah didnt receive any mediations and we dont have any mediations and dont believe in any mediations with the Egyptians regime. The only solution with this regime is that it leaves to America which he works for its interest. J.I: There are two kinds of judiciary now in Egypt: the public cases which falls within the jurisdiction of the civil judiciary that everyone speaks about its partial or total integrity. But there are cases that are related to all the Islamic groups, which are transferred to the military judiciary which doesnt have any appeal or anything. How do you explain this discrimination in treatment against the Islamic groups and the double standards before these groups? A. Z: This is the American Jewish policy in Egypt. There are the high criminal courts and there are the emergency high state security courts, these courts rule with the criminal law, but its sentences cannot be appealed, which means any sentence that are issued by it makes the persistent of the republic the only one which has the right to amend or mitigating or transfer it to another court. After that they werent satisfied by this because some judges in these courts ruled against the wish of the government like the case of assassinating Rifat Al-Mahjob, so they assigned special chambers for terrorism in these courts to transfer the brothers to it and kept in it judges like Salahidin Bador who was recently shot in Egypt. They werent satisfied with this and issued law 74/79 that is known as anti-terrorism Act, which allows them to search homes and detain people without an order and empowers the government to detain any person for six months without being be charged. And they werent satisfied with this but rather they transferred people to the military courts, which ruled to date on 108 persons with capital punishment, within four years 88 of them were executed. Latest was the sentence that was issued against our brothers and they executed because they did an operation against the Jews or what was called Khan Al-Khalili case. This is the Egyptian regime and this is the American policy. J.I: The former interior minister Hassan Al-Alfi talked frequently about penetration of the Egyptian intelligence or state security intelligence to the Egyptian Islamic groups and this is what led to it failure in many operations

in Egypt. Do you really feel some kind of penetration that he talks about especially in the ranks of Al-Jihad Group and to what extent is this penetration, if it existed? A. Z: First, we are in a state of war with the government. This government could be able to recruit a person who is far from us and claim that it achieved a security penetration, but the one who failed in security and dismissed from his job and insulted by the president of the republic on TV, and told him not to speak is: Hassan Al-Alfi, and he said to him that what he was doing is jesting, and he is the seventh interior minister to fail in resisting the Islamic stream. Every interior minister comes and says that he will eliminate terrorism, and in the end he is dismissed from his job without achieving his goals. So the one who failed in his work and is really penetrated is the interior ministry, and the proof on that is our presence and operations, and a proof on that is that America keeps us in the terrorists list, and we challenge the government to eliminate us. and we seek help from Allah, then from our brothers, and they seek the help from America and depend on tremendous armies and the American aid, And Allah has full power and control over His Affairs, but most of men know not. J.I: Your relation with the Egyptian and non-Egyptian Islamic groups in the current situation. Why did the Islamic groups that believe in armed violence fail until now to agree on a strategy despite almost all of them share in the determined goal? A. Z: Our relation with the mujahid Islamic groups is a brotherly relation and the relation of participating in the same battle. We repeat the call for all the mujahid Islamic groups to unit before one goal, which is resisting this alliance that consists of the regimes, America and Israel. We have to work together to remove these regimes and not to give any legitimacy to these regimes, and not to have a side battle between us, and that our battle should be directed to these regimes. This is our message to the Islamic groups. Regarding why the Islamic groups didnt agree on a unified strategy, the presence of the International Islamic Front with its charter and efforts is considered a major and first step on this

path. That is why America considered this Front a clear challenge to it, and considered who participated in it terrorists who should be captured, because the Front said the truth that America fears to be spread between the people. J.I: Your relation with sheikh Osama bin Laden and your concomitant with him in Afghanistan. Do you consider that this relation through the Front made you one organization or that the Egyptian Al-Jihad Group still keeps its structure and independence from the International Islamic Front that is led by the sheikh Osama bin Laden? A. Z: First regardless of the details, our relations with sheikh Osama bin Laden and the mujahidin brothers in Afghanistan is the relation of participating in the jihad and fellowship in arms, and its an old relation and martyrs have fallen from among us in the field of jihad. This is an old relation. The Front is a fruit of this relation, however, regarding sheikh Osama bin Laden he moves much and we contact and visit him very much. The purpose of creating the Front is to be a container of all the Islamic groups to resist the Zionist attack, to unit in this Front to execute this purpose and to be real and operational plans against America. J.I: But will this require that these organizations not necessarily merge within the framework of one organization? A. Z: (A broad smile and a laugh from the depths) Dont try to take everything in the first interview with you. This is a question that cannot be answered in the first interview. J.I: Some of the Islamic groups which believe and practice the armed struggle (for example in Algeria) began to call to stopping the armed action against the regimes and called for peaceful dialogue with these regimes. So are there justifications for the Al-Jihad Group in Egypt to continue the armed struggle in Egypt against the regime? A. Z: This is a question that has two sections. The first section: is that these experiences in Algeria and in Egypt proved the failure of the so called political or democratic solution. We consider this method illegitimate. What happened to the Front of Islamic Salvation in Algeria?. What

happened to the Muslim Brotherhood group in Egypt, all of them entered prison. Its only jihad and the only path is jihad. This is regarding the political action. Regarding the second section: for us we have good tidings. We increased our action against the regime and working for jihad against America and Israel, and action outside Egypt. The government is chasing us everywhere and we are chasing it everywhere. Al-Gama'a Al-Islamiyya attacked Hosni Mubarak in Addis Ababa. We are now increased our work to resist America and Israel directly. So we see the popular response to us and we, Alhamdulillah, for us the situation is auspicious, that promise us that this path is what will lead us to it and all the other paths are unsuccessful. J.I: Dr. Aymen Al-Zawahiri, Amir of the Egyptian Al-Jihad Group, what is the message that you want to send to Egypt and the Islamic World through action and your leadership of the Egyptian Al-Jihad Group? A. Z: I want to send a message to my Muslim brothers everywhere as a Muslim, so leave these titles and labels. We want to send a message to our Muslim brothers everywhere. If we want to live in glory and people of dignity and pride we should fight the new Crusade war against America and Israel. This is our message to our brothers in the Arab and Islamic world and Egypt that they be with us against our enemies Israel and America, with all what we can. The solider and officer in the Egyptian army shouldnt use his weapon against the Muslims, and should know that its dignity has been smashed the day they were forced to evacuate Sinai and it was given to the American forces to keep peace. The Muslim world should preserve the independence of Al-Azhar, which was the fort of resistance in Egypt in the face of tyranny and occupation, which due to the government control and seizure of it became inviting the Israeli Chief Rabbi to visit Al-Azhar. The Moslem student should be engaged in the elections of the students union to spread the soul of resisting against America and Israel. The Muslim father and mother should teach their sons the Quran and the Hadith and be eager to teach them that Palestine is a Moslem land that was occupied by the Jews, and that all these agreements, treaties and conventions are false. They should explain to them that America occupies Egypt now. And the that Mecca Mosque is occupied and Medina is occupied and the petrol is plundered.

They have to raise them on that, this is an obligation on every young man, professional and syndicalistic in Egypt to stand in the face of America and Israel. Defeating America isnt hard. America was defeated in Vietnam and expelled from Lebanon and from Somalia, so if we stood in front of it sincerely it will end as the USSR have ended. Everything depends that we be sincere in resisting. J.I: Finally, we thank Dr. Aymen Al-Zawahiri, Amir of Al-Jihad Group in Egypt for giving us this opportunity to interview him in the mountains of Afghanistan to inform us on the situation in Egypt and the conditions of AlJihad Group. A. Z: I thank you and bear on you the responsibility of transferring of this interview because we have (a bad) previous experiences with the media and I bear Al-Jazeera channel this responsibility. I hope Al-Jazeera channel succeeds in what others have failed. J.I: InshaAllah we will be to your good opinion.