Zawahiri calls US defence cuts, talks with Taliban 'signs of shrinking American power'
Islamabad, Mar 1 (ANI): New Al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri has said that the United States' decisions to cut its defence budget and engage in peace talks with the Afghan Taliban are signals of a decline in the country's power.
"One of the latest signs of its shrinking (power) is the reduction in the US Department of Defense's budget," said Zawahiri in the 24-minute audio recording posted on Islamist websites.
He also said that "military arrogance" had brought it nothing but losses, The Express Tribune reports.
"The biggest factor that forced America to reduce its defence budget is Allah's help to the mujahideen to harm the evil empire of our time," Zawahiri added, referring to those who fight holy war.
Zawahiri said US overtures to the Afghan Taliban, with which it has made "exploratory" contacts for possible reconciliation, was further evidence of its defeat.
"America is about to withdraw its forces from Afghanistan, and then not only accept, but insist upon requesting negotiations with the Islamic Emirate (Afghan Taliban), which it used to consider as a terrorist group that must be annihilated," he said.
Zawahiri, in the recording entitled "So Why Did We Revolt Against Him?", also said popular uprisings that have convulsed the Arab world since last year were overwhelmingly Islamist in motive.
"The popular Arab uprisings have proved they are mainly Islamic in orientation and have sparked a revolution against the mercenaries of America," Zawahiri said. (ANI)
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