Al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri urged Afghans to rise up against “Crusader swine” in an audio message on Wednesday.
The message was posted on extremist Islamist forums, and mentioned a series of scandals in Afghanistan that have sent U.S.-Afghan tensions spiraling.
Zawahiri cited the burning of the Quran by U.S. soldiers last month, and an online video in which U.S. Marines were shown urinating on the corpses of Taliban fighters in January.
“Allah disclosed the Americans through the tape that appeared on the Internet showing the Crusader pigs of the Marines as they urinated on the body of an Afghan mujaheed, may the vast mercy of Allah be upon him,” Zawahiri said.
“This is their view towards other people in general and the Muslims in particular, and this is their way of treating us.”
Appealing to Afghans’ pride, Zawahiri asked how they will respond when their children ask what they did to those who insulted the Quran, mocked the Prophet Mohammed, killed their fellow countrymen and urinated on their bodies.
The al-Qaeda chief said the proper response would be to join the terror insurgency led by the Taliban and al-Qaeda against foreign troops.
“O honorable, strong Afghan, the path is now clear and the way is shown, so either you stand under the banner of Islam as a mujaheed and a helper to the mujahedeen with your hand, tongue, opinion, money and heart, or you will face the humiliation of the world and the shame of the hereafter,” Zawahiri said.
“You saw with your own eyes how the Crusaders look at you and what your value is to them," he added.
But the message made no reference to a massacre of 16 Afghan civilians by a U.S. soldier in southern Afghanistan earlier this month, leading analysts to suggest the video was taped before the murders occurred.
Last month, Zawahiri released another video message welcoming Somalia’s terror group al-Shaba'ab to Al-Qaeda's ranks.
“Today, I have glad tidings for the Muslim ummah (nation) that will please the believers and disturb the disbelievers, which is the joining of the al-Shaba'ab al-Mujahideen Movement in Somalia to Qaedat al-Jihad to support the jihadi unity against the Zionist-Crusader campaign and their assistants amongst the treacherous agent rulers,” Zawahiri said at the time.
“The jihadist movement is with the grace of Allah, growing and spreading within its Muslim nation despite facing the fiercest crusade campaign in history by the West,” he claimed.