“I Find No Evidence That Makes Me Agree bin Laden Was Behind 9/11”

This would be entertaining if it weren’t real.

From the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI):

American Professor Natana DeLong-Bas: ‘I Do Not Find Any Evidence that Would Make Me Agree that Osama bin Laden Was Behind the Attack on the Twin Towers’

On December 21, 2006, the London daily Al-Sharq Al-Awsat published an interview with Dr. Natana DeLong-Bas, who taught this year in the Department of Theology at Boston College and in the Department of Near East and Judaic Studies at Brandeis University. In the interview, she said that Wahhabism is not extremism and that the Muslim Brotherhood and Sayyed Qutb have nothing to do with jihadism. Dr. DeLong-Bas also indicated that there may be a Western conspiracy against the Arab and Islamic world, and said that she knows of no evidence that Osama bin Laden was behind the 9/11 attacks.

In 2004, DeLong-Bas published her doctoral dissertation in book form under the title Wahhabi Islam: From Revival and Reform to Global Jihad. This book, published by the Oxford University Press, has been highly recommended by the Saudi Embassy in Washington, D.C.

Her defense of Wahhabism is essentially based on the premise words don’t kill, people do.

“The extremists in Saudi Arabia are a mixture of a number of elements, and their extremism does not stem from the Islamic religion, as some think. The issue is more complicated than that.

On Osama bin Laden:

Q: “What about Osama bin Laden – do you think that he was behind 9/11?”

Dr. Natana DeLong-Bas: “I think that the Western media and the world have given Osama bin Laden more weight [than he has in reality] and exaggerated in depicting the danger he poses. Likewise, I do not find any evidence that would make me agree that Osama bin Laden was behind the attack on the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center. All we heard from him was praise and acclaim for those who carried out the operation.”

She makes some valid arguments (not in the answer on OBL above, however) when connecting civil discontent to actions, but she leaves out the use of religion as a means of validating extreme actions. She does “not want to believe” in a lot of things, which I am sorry to tell her, doesn’t make them untrue.