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Arab television airs Faisal Shahzad terror video

An Arab television network broadcast video Wednesday of a man identified as failed Times Square bomber Faisal Shahzad claiming that his upcoming attack on the United States would be "revenge for all the mujahedeen . . . and oppressed Muslims.

"I will take revenge on their behalf, God willing. And I really wish that hearts of the Muslims will be pleased with this attack," the man resembling Shahzad said on the video posted by the network Al-Arabiya.

In the tape, which resembles in style so-called "martyrdom videos" sometimes filmed in advance by suicide bombers, Shahzad is clad in traditional Pakistani garb, set against a blue backdrop with a black scarf around his head and an assault rifle by his side as he lectures and reads from a religious text.

"Eight years have passed by in Afghanistan and you'll see that the Muslim war has just started, and we will tell you how until Islam is spread on the whole world," he says.

Al-Arabiya said the video, which it also posted on its website, was excerpted from a longer 40-minute version. It bears the logo of Umar Studios, which posted videos shortly after the Times Square incident claiming credit for the Pakistani Taliban - the group U.S. officials now believe was backing Shahzad.

The comments broadcast by Al-Arabiya echo Shahzad's more elaborate explanation of his actions last month in federal court in Manhattan, when he pleaded guilty and told U.S. District Judge Miriam Cedarbaum, "I consider myself . . . a Muslim soldier."

Shahzad, 30, a Pakistani-American from Bridgeport, Conn., confessed to driving his Nissan Pathfinder to Times Square on May 1 with an improvised bomb made up of gasoline, propane, firecrackers and fertilizer packed inside.

The bomb fizzled, and Shahzad was arrested days later attempting to leave the country. He cooperated with the government and pleaded guilty on June 21, admitting that he was trained by the Taliban in Pakistan in 2009, and hoped to do damage and cause death to send a message about U.S. mistreatment of Muslims.

On the tape, apparently prepared some time before the car bombing attempt, Shahzad specifically links his attack to avenging the deaths of two men he did not mention in his courtroom speech - Abu Musab al Zarqawi, the late leader of al-Qaida in Iraq, and a man Al-Arabiya identified as former Pakistani Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud.

He also portrays himself as more devout than many Muslims.

"People do their prayers, pay Zakat, fast and perform Hajj," he says. "They follow one part of the religion, and drop another, which is the fight for the sake of Allah. Jihad means holy war for the sake of God. . . . By abandoning it [jihad], religion is destroyed, and Muslims are put in a humiliating position; their lands are stolen, and their authority is stripped from them."

The second half of the 4-minute, 42-second video posted by Al-Arabiya shows men with weapons hiking through the mountains and sometimes speaking. They were not identified on the video, or on Al-Arabiya's English website.


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