Osama bin Laden wrote ‘Letter to America’ in 2002 to rationalise the 9/11 attack that killed thousands
A letter penned by Osama bin Laden justifying the 9/11 attacks in 2001 has gone viral on TikTok, with users expressing support for the extremist views expressed in the document, Daily Mail reported.
Bin Laden, the mastermind behind the Al-Qaeda terrorist group, wrote the ‘Letter to America’ in 2002 to rationalise the heinous acts that claimed thousands of innocent lives.
The hashtag ‘LettertoAmerica’ on TikTok has garnered immense attention, amassing over 7.3 million views. Shockingly, many users seem to endorse the distorted reasoning presented by Bin Laden, ignoring the grave consequences of the attacks.
The resurgence of the letter gained momentum after The Guardian, a UK newspaper, linked to a 2002 article translating it in full. Although the link was later removed, the letter continued to circulate on TikTok, sparking discussions that often lack historical context and condemnatory perspective.
The ‘Letter to America’ presents anti-American, anti-Semitic, and anti-Western sentiments, attributing one of the main motivations for 9/11 to US support for Israel. Bin Laden’s letter alleges the collective culpability of all Americans and Jewish people for perceived crimes against Muslims globally.
Florida Senator Marco Rubio criticised TikTok users for embracing Bin Laden’s warped rationale, stating, “Now trending on social media… people saying that after reading bin Laden’s ‘Letter to America,’ they now understand terrorism is a legitimate method of resistance.”
The Guardian, acknowledging the removal of the letter, stated it was shared “without its original context.” The page that hosted the letter now directs readers to a news article that initially contextualised it, emphasising the importance of understanding the historical background.
The TikTok trend’s originator, Lynette Adkins, urged users to read the letter, contributing to the widespread dissemination of Bin Laden’s extremist ideology. Adkins, previously featured in a Los Angeles Times piece, links to a fundraising page for “Palestinian rights” on her TikTok bio.
The letter’s reemergence coincides with ongoing conflicts in the Middle East, specifically the Israel-Hamas war. While the letter attempts to link the 9/11 attacks to US policies, its resurgence lacks a critical examination of Bin Laden’s violent legacy and oppressive ideologies.