Reader’s Digest published my exposé on Osama bin Laden in its July 1998 edition. Bin Laden was so “new” to Americans, we couldn’t even find a photograph of him to illustrate my article, and had to employ a sketch artist.
When it was published, the article was called, “This Man Wants You Dead.”
Three weeks later, bin Laden and al Qaida were all over the front pages after they blew up two U.S. embassies in East Africa and murdered at least 223 people and wounded 4,085 more.
I had predicted in my Reader’s Digest article that bin Laden would launch deadly attacks on America, but it took years for that message to get through.
Fast forward to September 11, 2002, one year after the 9/11 attacks on America.
I traveled to London to meet bin Laden protégés at the Finsbury Park Mosque in “Londonstan,” the north London suburb where al Qaida and its supporters controlled the streets.
Abu Hamza al-Masri, an Egyptian cleric who wore a hook because he had lost a hand in Afghanistan fighting the Soviets, held forth to the press in celebration of the “Glorious 19” al Qaida terrorists who carried out the 9/11 attacks just one year earlier.
Abu Hamza and his friends had put up posters all over London of the burning World Trade Center Towers, calling it a “Towering Day in History.”
It was disgusting. I wrote about this in my 2003 book, “Preachers of Hate: Islam and the War on America.”
Every time I see Abu Hamza — or even his photograph — I think back on that day when he celebrated the 9/11 attacks on America.
It was crystal clear: He felt he could act with immunity in Britain. Because of his many children from several wives, he was earning a top “salary” without working, thanks to hard-working British taxpayers who paid him a socialist subsidy on the dole.
My fellow Americans: Any day is a good day to bring these people to justice. They are lucky we found them in London and not on the battlefield.
Ken Timmerman is an author of many books, available at kentimmerman.com, and is now running for U.S. Congress in the Eighth District of Maryland.