ROME, March 20 (Reuters) – Italian security officials are treating Osama bin Laden’s new accusations against Pope Benedict as a serious threat, Ansa news agency said on Thursday, quoting a source at the interior ministry’s anti-terrorism unit.
An interior ministry spokesman said security officials will meet on Friday to examine the Al Qaeda leader’s taped message, in which he said offending cartoons of Islam’s Prophet Mohammad were part of a “new crusade” involving Pope Benedict.
* Pamela has more:
By Walid Phares
In an audiotape posted on Internet, Osama Bin Laden threatened Europe with punishment because of its “negligence in spite of the opportunity presented to take the necessary measures” to stop the republishing of the Danish cartoons. It also menaced the Vatican with retribution for an alleged role in incitement “against religion.” This al Qaeda warning would have been normal in Salafi Jihad logic.
And they are worried with good reason. The Pope certainly isn’t leading a new Crusade, but Rome is nevertheless the apple of the jihadist eye. One of the most influential Muslim clerics in the world, Sheikh al-Qaradawi, said this a few years ago:
The friends of the Prophet heard that two cities would be conquered by Islam, Romiyya and Constantinople, and the Prophet said that ‘Hirqil [i.e. Constantinople] would be conquered first.’ Romiyya is Rome, the capital of Italy, and Constantinople was the capital of the state of Byzantine Rome, which today is Istanbul. He said that Hirqil which is Constantinople, would be conquered first and this is what happened…All right, Constantinople was conquered, and the second part of the prophecy remains, that is, the conquest of Romiyya. This means that Islam will return to Europe. Islam entered Europe twice and left it… Perhaps the next conquest, Allah willing, will be by means of preaching and ideology. The conquest need not necessarily be by the sword… [The conquest of Mecca] was not by the sword or by war, but by a [Hudabiyya] treaty, and by peace…
Perhaps we will conquer these lands without armies.
From the department of flying pigs:
Pope Benedict XVI
The Catholic Church is pushing for the construction of a Christian meeting center at the birthplace of the Apostle Paul in Turkey. German bishops are demanding tolerance for Christians in Turkey in exchange for their support for mosques in Germany.
Which would make him a Muslim, and the churches mosques. But in their eyes, it would simply make him one of the authentic Christians as envisioned in the Qur’an — one who rejects the divinity and redemption of Christ, and reveres him along with Muhammad as one of the prophets.
“But critics are sceptical about whether such initiatives would work as long as the powerful, and ultraconservative, religious establishment in Saudi Arabia continues to exert enormous influence over society.” Uh huh.
How did 40,000 clerics — 40,000 — get The Religion of Peaceâ„¢ so drastically wrong in the first place?
Incendiary sermons are being preached to the Muslims in the popeÂ´s diocese. And this is no isolated case – the mosques are in the hands of Islamic radicals
* Islamic radicals? Are there any others?Â