Louis Braille (January 4, 1809 – January 6, 1852) was the inventor of braille, a world-wide system used by blind and visually impaired people for reading and writing. Braille is read by passing one's fingers over characters made up of an arrangement of one to six embossed points. It has been adapted to almost every known language.
Braille was born in Coupvray near Paris, France. His father, Simon-René Braille, was a harness and saddle maker. At the age of three, Braille injured his left eye with a stitching awl from his father's workshop. This destroyed his left eye, and sympathetic ophthalmia led to loss of vision in his right. Braille was completely blind by the age of four. Despite his disability, Braille continued to attend school, with the support of his parents, until he was required to read and write.
At the age of ten, Braille earned a scholarship to the Institution Royale des Jeunes Aveugles (Royal Institution for Blind Youth) in Paris. The scholarship was his ticket out of the usual fate for the blind: begging for money on the streets of Paris. However, the conditions in the school were not much better. Braille was served stale bread and water, and students were sometimes beaten and locked up as punishment.
Braille, a bright and creative student, became a talented cellist and organist in his time at the school, playing the organ for churches all over France.
At the school, the children were taught basic craftsman's skills and simple trades. They were also taught how to read by feeling raised letters (a system devised by the school's founder, Valentin Haüy). However, because the raised letters were made using paper pressed against copper wire, the students never learned to write.
In 1821, a former soldier named Charles Barbier visited the school. Barbier shared his invention called "night writing," a code of twelve raised dots that let soldiers share top-secret information on the battlefield without having to speak. Although the code ended up being too difficult for the average soldier, Braille picked it up quickly."Louis Braille" in braille
That year, Braille began inventing his raised-dot system with his father's stitching awl, finishing at age fifteen. Braille's system, "braille", used only six dots and corresponded to letters, whereas Barbier used twelve dots corresponding to sounds. The six dot system allowed the recognition of letters with a single fingertip apprehending all the dots at once, requiring no movement or repositioning which slowed recognition in systems requiring more dots. The Braille system also offered numerous benefits over Valentin Haüy's raised letter method, the most notable being the ability to both read and write an alphabet.
Braille later extended his system to include notation for mathematics and music. The first book in braille was published in 1827 under the title Method of Writing Words, Music, and Plain Songs by Means of Dots, for Use by the Blind and Arranged for Them. In 1839 Braille published details of a method he had developed for communication with sighted people, using patterns of dots to approximate the shape of printed symbols. Braille and his friend Pierre Foucault went on to develop a machine to speed up the somewhat cumbersome system.
Braille became a well-respected teacher at the Institute where he had been a student. Although he was admired and respected by his pupils, his braille system was not taught at the Institute during his lifetime. He had always been plagued by ill health, and he died in Paris of tuberculosis in 1852 at the age of 43; his body would be disinterred in 1952 (the centenary of his death) and honored with re-interrment in the Panthéon in Paris.
The significance of the braille system was not identified until 1868, when Dr. Thomas Armitage, along with a group of four blind men, established the British and Foreign Society for Improving the Embossed Literature of the Blind (later the Royal National Institute of the Blind), which published books in Braille's system.
Today, braille has been adapted to almost every major national language and is the primary system of written communication for visually impaired persons around the world.
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Today, braille has been adapted to almost every major national language and is the primary system of written communication for visually impaired persons around the world.
Although he was admired and respected by his pupils, his braille system was not taught at the Institute during his lifetime. The January 18 tape made reference to the leaking of a British memo claiming that U.S. Braille became a well-respected teacher at the Institute where he had been a student. forces (from Iraq and Afghanistan) was only one of several ``conditions  . Braille and his friend Pierre Foucault went on to develop a machine to speed up the somewhat cumbersome system. The speaker did not outline all the conditions for a truce in the excerpts aired by the Arab news network, but he did say that the withdrawal of U.S. In 1839 Braille published details of a method he had developed for communication with sighted people, using patterns of dots to approximate the shape of printed symbols. .
The first book in braille was published in 1827 under the title Method of Writing Words, Music, and Plain Songs by Means of Dots, for Use by the Blind and Arranged for Them. Lawrence cites, among other things, the lack of any quotations from the Qur'an or references to recent events in the January, 2006 tape. Braille later extended his system to include notation for mathematics and music. Some though have questioned the tape's authenticity, including Duke professor Bruce Lawrence, author of Messages to the World: The Statements of Osama Bin Laden. The Braille system also offered numerous benefits over Valentin Haüy's raised letter method, the most notable being the ability to both read and write an alphabet. The American Central Intelligence Agency has stated that it believes the speaker to be Osama bin Laden. The six dot system allowed the recognition of letters with a single fingertip apprehending all the dots at once, requiring no movement or repositioning which slowed recognition in systems requiring more dots. On January 18, 2006, Arabic news network al-Jazeera received a tape, purportedly from Bin Laden, in which he warned that preparations for attacks in the United States were in place but also offered a truce to rebuild Iraq and Afghanistan.
Braille's system, "braille", used only six dots and corresponded to letters, whereas Barbier used twelve dots corresponding to sounds. The Iranians who reported this note that this year's message in conjunction with the Muslim Haj came from his number two, Ayman al-Zawahiri, for the first time." . That year, Braille began inventing his raised-dot system with his father's stitching awl, finishing at age fifteen. The al Qaeda leader died of kidney failure and was buried in Iran, where he had spent most of his time since the destruction of al Qaeda in Afghanistan. Although the code ended up being too difficult for the average soldier, Braille picked it up quickly. On January 9, 2006, Michael Ledeen, a scholar with close ties to the Bush administration, wrote that "....according to Iranians I trust, Osama bin Laden finally departed this world in mid-December. Barbier shared his invention called "night writing," a code of twelve raised dots that let soldiers share top-secret information on the battlefield without having to speak. In early December 2005, in a videotaped message posted on an Islamist website, the deputy leader of Al Qaeda, Ayman al-Zawahri, was reported as saying that the group's leader was alive and still leading their "holy war against the West"..
In 1821, a former soldier named Charles Barbier visited the school. On November 25, 2005, Democratic Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid said that he was informed that Bin Laden may have died in the October earthquake in Pakistan.. However, because the raised letters were made using paper pressed against copper wire, the students never learned to write. . They were also taught how to read by feeling raised letters (a system devised by the school's founder, Valentin Haüy). authorities said they had no evidence of whether Bin Laden was hurt or killed as a result of a 7.6 magnitude earthquake that hit the disputed area of Kashmir, in northeastern Pakistan. At the school, the children were taught basic craftsman's skills and simple trades. In October, U.S.
Braille, a bright and creative student, became a talented cellist and organist in his time at the school, playing the organ for churches all over France. He is said to have been keeping a low profile, with as few as ten men guarding him. Braille was served stale bread and water, and students were sometimes beaten and locked up as punishment. On September 23, 2005, Bin Laden was believed by Pakistani officials to be on the Afghan-Pakistani border. However, the conditions in the school were not much better. (See 2004 bin Laden video.). The scholarship was his ticket out of the usual fate for the blind: begging for money on the streets of Paris. presidential candidates Bush and John Kerry had roundly condemned bin Laden, his ideas and his objectives, including an immediate removal of troops from Iraq and Afghanistan.
At the age of ten, Braille earned a scholarship to the Institution Royale des Jeunes Aveugles (Royal Institution for Blind Youth) in Paris. Bush but appeared to hedge his bets on the election outcome, remarking that "your security is not in the hands of Kerry, nor Bush..." Both U.S. Despite his disability, Braille continued to attend school, with the support of his parents, until he was required to read and write. President George W. Braille was completely blind by the age of four. In the video bin Laden gave a carefully crafted speech in which he repeatedly insulted U.S. This destroyed his left eye, and sympathetic ophthalmia led to loss of vision in his right. presidential election.
At the age of three, Braille injured his left eye with a stitching awl from his father's workshop. This release came just four days before the 2004 U.S. His father, Simon-René Braille, was a harness and saddle maker. On October 29, 2004, the Arab television network Al Jazeera broadcast a video tape of bin Laden addressing citizens of the United States, discussing the reasons behind the September 11, 2001 attacks. Braille was born in Coupvray near Paris, France. military operations in Afghanistan but none have been confirmed. . Rumors about his whereabouts have appeared from time to time since the start of U.S.
It has been adapted to almost every known language. A Spanish court indicted bin Laden and 34 others on charges related to terrorism on September 17, 2003. Braille is read by passing one's fingers over characters made up of an arrangement of one to six embossed points. Although he has been publicly disowned by his family, an estranged family member, Carmen bin Laden, speculates (without providing evidence) that unnamed family members may be providing financial support to bin Laden. Louis Braille (January 4, 1809 – January 6, 1852) was the inventor of braille, a world-wide system used by blind and visually impaired people for reading and writing. Presidential election. This speculation was later undercut by newly released videos of bin Laden, alive and referring to current events such as the 2004 U.S.
His death was speculated on by the Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf  and by President Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan . Bin Laden was rumored in the Pakistani press to have died in 2001 of pulmonary complications incident to catastrophic kidney failure in the absence of available hygienic dialysis. Ayman al-Zawahiri, also an FBI Most Wanted Terrorist, is a physician and may have provided medical care to bin Laden. The media reported that bin Laden suffered from a kidney disorder requiring him to have access to advanced medical facilities, possibly kidney dialysis.
According to Gary Bernsten, in his 2005 book Jawbreaker, a number of al-Qaeda detainees later confirmed that Bin Laden had escaped Tora Bora into Pakistan via an easternly route through snow covered mountains in the area of Parachinar, Pakistan. bombardments, most notably near Tora Bora, or that he may have died of natural causes. There had been suggestions that bin Laden was killed or fatally injured during U.S. invasion of Afghanistan resulted in the death or arrest of many members of both Al Qaeda and the ruling Taliban, but bin Laden was not found.
The following U.S. government. As the aggrieved nation in the September 11, 2001 attack, this was unacceptable to the U.S. The Taliban refused to surrender bin Laden without proof or evidence of his involvement in the September 11 attacks and made a counter-offer to try bin Laden in an Islamic court or extradite him to a third-party country.
After the September 11 attacks, the United States demanded the Taliban authorities, who were not recognized as the legitimate government of Afghanistan by the United Nations or indeed most nations in the world, to deliver bin Laden to face trial for his crimes. However, as is the case with almost all tapes of bin Laden following September 11, the authenticity of this tape is also disputed widely. . ...as I looked at those demolished towers in Lebanon, it entered my mind that we should punish the oppressor in kind and that we should destroy towers in America in order that they taste some of what we tasted and so that they be deterred from killing our women and children.
In October of 2004, a videotape was released purportedly of bin Laden:. Those who kill our women and our innocent, we kill their women and innocent, until they stop from doing so.. We treat others like they treat us. And those individuals should stand for Allah, and to re-think and re-do their calculations.
And the general consensus is that most of the people who were in there were men that backed the biggest financial force in the world that spreads worldwide mischief [ta`ithu fil ardi fasaadaa]. It wasn't a children's school! And it wasn't a residence. As for the World Trade Center, the ones who were attacked and who died in it were a financial power. Nevertheless, bin Laden has publicly praised the September 11 attacks in several instances and has taken credit for being their "inspiration." It is clear in many of his public statements that he views himself as an active participant in the attacks, whether or not he deserves the credit the West gives him as their "mastermind." A good example is this passage from his October 2001 interview with Al-Jazeera:.
In addition, bin Laden is a suspect in other terrorist attacks around the world." It is important to note that bin Laden is not accused by the FBI of carrying out the 9/11 attacks; officially, the FBI says that he has not yet been formally indicted, and until he is captured alive and interviewed, he is not officially considered a suspect. These attacks killed over 200 people. The FBI's most wanted poster of bin Laden says, "Usama bin Laden is wanted in connection with the AUGUST 7 1998, bombings of the United States embassies in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania, and Nairobi, Kenya. The extent to which bin Laden was involved in funding or overseeing the operation is unknown.
Khalid has been in United States custody since September 2003. One leading al-Qaeda member, Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, claims (according to his interrogators) that the idea for the attacks came from him and not from bin Laden.  The evidence presented to NATO was never presented to the public for security reasons. Article 5 states that any attack on a member state is considered an attack against the entire alliance.
NATO's general secretary George Robertson described the evidence as clear and decisive and led the organization to invoke, for the first time in its history, article 5 in the NATO pact. presented evidence to NATO of bin Laden's involvement in the September 11 attacks. In a closed door session in October 2001, the U.S. However, the video found in Jalalabad in December 2001 is still the most often cited as evidence for bin Laden's participation in the September 11 attacks.
He took credit for "inspiring" what he calls the "blessed attacks" of September 11 in several public statements. In subsequent statements and interviews he expressed admiration for whoever was responsible. Several other videotapes have surfaced in the media (11.11.01 Sunday Times / Al-Jazeera 26.12.02 / 04.02 Al-Jazeera/AP / Sunday Times 19.05.02 / 09.02 Al-Jazeera etc). (full text of the tape transcript).
This is all that we had hoped for". (...Inaudible...) Due to my experience in this field, I was thinking that the fire from the gas in the plane would melt the iron structure of the building and collapse the area where the plane hit and all the floors above it only. I was the most optimistic of them all. We calculated that the floors that would be hit would be three or four floors.
"We calculated in advance the number of casualties from the enemy, who would be killed based on the position of the tower. translation of this tape bin Laden says:. According to the official U.S. Still, because of the anomalies surrounding this video, the authenticity of the tape remains highly disputed.
However, this is also disputed by higher resolution photos of the same video which show a man who does resemble bin Laden .  In some low resolution pictures of the video, bin Laden appears smiling with a more round face and a nose which is different to the one seen in previous images of him. This idea has been disputed by numerous videos and photos of Bin Laden wearing the same ring on many different occasions. Furthermore, he is shown wearing a gold ring, which some claim is forbidden for men by orthodox Islam.
However, the quality of the tape is poor, and bin Laden is seen writing with his right hand, although according to the FBI he is left handed. forces in Afghanistan captured a videotape during a raid on a house in Jalalabad, which allegedly shows bin Laden discussing the September 11th attacks with a group of followers. In December 2001 U.S. General Noriega was made a drug baron by the CIA and, in need, he was made a scapegoat.".
Drug Enforcement Department are encouraging drug trade so that they could show performance and get millions of dollars worth of budget. The people in the U.S. These agencies do not want to eradicate narcotics cultivation and trafficking because their importance will be diminished. secret agencies.
Drug smugglers from all over the world are in contact with the U.S. I will give you an example. Now they will spend the money for their expansion and for increasing their importance. Where will this huge amount go? It will be provided to the same agencies, which need huge funds and want to exert their importance.
You see, the Bush Administration approved a budget of 40 billion dollars. So, they first started propaganda against Usama and Taleban and then this incident happened. They needed an enemy. This [funding issue] was not a big problem till the existence of the former Soviet Union but after that the budget of these agencies has been in danger.
intelligence agencies in the U.S., which require billions of dollars worth of funds from the Congress and the government every year. The United States should try to trace the perpetrators of these attacks within itself... Such a practice is forbidden even in the course of a battle... Islam strictly forbids causing harm to innocent women, children and other people.
I had no knowledge of these attacks, nor do I consider the killing of innocent women, children and other humans as an appreciable act. As a Muslim, I try my best to avoid telling a lie. "I have already said that I am not involved in the 11 September attacks in the United States. However, in an interview published in Ummat Karachi, on 28 September 2001, but largely ignored by Western media, bin Laden stated:.
Immediately after the September 11, 2001 attacks in the United States, the United States government named bin Laden as the prime suspect. offered a US$25 million reward for information leading to bin Laden's apprehension or conviction and, in 1999, convinced the United Nations to impose sanctions against Afghanistan in an attempt to force the Taliban to extradite him. The U.S. The attack failed to harm bin Laden but killed 19 other people.
military launched an assassination attempt using cruise missiles. In August 1998, the U.S. Clinton also signed an executive order authorizing bin Laden's arrest or assassination. In response to these attacks, President Bill Clinton ordered a freeze on assets linked to bin Laden.
The al-Qaeda organization was allegedly responsible for the successful USS Cole bombing in October, 2000. Al-Qaeda was allegedly involved in several unsuccessful conspiracies, including the 2000 millennium attack plots to bomb Los Angeles airport, several tourist sites in Jordan and the USS The Sullivans, and well as the subsequent Paris embassy terrorist attack plot. Since June 1999, bin Laden has been listed as one of the FBI Ten Most Wanted Fugitives and FBI Most Wanted Terrorists. Bin Laden is officially wanted by the United States in connection with the August 7, 1998 bombings of the United States embassies in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania and Nairobi, Kenya, that killed 225 people and injured more than 4000.
This is in accordance with the words of Almighty Allah, 'and fight the pagans all together as they fight you all together,' and 'fight them until there is no more tumult or oppression, and there prevail justice and faith in Allah.'" For more information, see Osama bin Laden Fatwa. In 1998, bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri (a leader of Egyptian Islamic Jihad) co-signed a fatwa (binding religious edict) in the name of the World Islamic Front for Jihad Against Jews and Crusaders, declaring, "The ruling to kill the Americans and their allies – civilians and military – is an individual duty for every Muslim who can do it in any country in which it is possible to do it, in order to liberate the al-Aqsa Mosque (in Jerusalem) and the holy mosque (in Makka) from their grip, and in order for their armies to move out of all the lands of Islam, defeated and unable to threaten any Muslim. Bin Laden and the Indonesian militant known as Hambali allegedly funded, then aborted the Operation Bojinka conspiracy when police discovered the plot in Manila, Philippines on January 6, 1995. soldiers, part of Operation Restore Hope, had been staying at the hotel for two weeks but had left two days earlier for Somalia.
About 100 U.S. December 29, 1992, bombing of the Gold Mihor Hotel in Aden, Yemen that killed a Yemeni hotel employee and an Austrian national, and seriously injured the Austrian's wife. Ayman al-Zawahiri, and sentenced him to death in absentia for the massacre. The Egyptian government convicted Bin Laden's colleague, one of the leaders of Al-Gama'a al-Islamiyya, Dr.
Bin Laden is suspected of funding the 1997 massacre of 62 tourists in Luxor, Egypt conducted by Al-Gama'a al-Islamiyya, an Egyptian militant Islamist group. Bin Laden supported the Taliban government with financial and paramilitary assistance and, in 1997, he moved to Kandahar, the Taliban stronghold. After spending a few months in the border region hosted by local leaders, bin Laden forged a close relationship with some of the leaders of Afghanistan's new Taliban government, notably Mullah Mohammed Omar. He chartered a plane and flew to Kabul before settling in Jalalabad.
Thus, in May 1996, under increasing pressure from Saudi Arabia, Egypt and the United States, Sudan expelled bin Laden to Afghanistan. However, Saudi Arabia refused because of the political difficulties of accepting such a controversial figure into their custody. Sudanese officials whose government was under international sanctions offered to extradite bin Laden to Saudi Arabia in the mid-1990s. and Saudi military bases in Riyadh and Dahran.
In 1995, the Saudi Arabian government stripped bin Laden of his citizenship after he claimed responsibility for attacks on U.S. Around this time, bin Laden and his associates began developing and executing a series of meticulously-planned terrorist attacks. The funding from these ventures was used to run several training camps on his farmland, where Islamist militants could receive instruction in firearms use and the use of explosives from former Afghan mujahideen. Bin Laden's operations in Sudan were protected by the powerful Sudanese government figure Hassan al Turabi.
Bin Laden also invested in business ventures, such as al-Hajira, a construction company that built roads throughout Sudan, and Wadi al-Aqiq, an agricultural corporation that farmed hundreds of thousands of acres of sorghum, gum arabic, sesame and sunflowers in Sudan's central Gezira province. Assisted by donations funneled through business and charitable fronts such as Benevolence International established by his brother-in-law, Mohammed Jamal Khalifa, bin Laden established a new base for mujahideen operations in Sudan to disseminate Islamist philosophy and recruit operatives in Southeast Asia, Africa, Europe, and the United States. Bin Laden's increasingly strident criticisms of the Saudi monarchy led the government to expel him to Sudan in 1991. forces in Saudi Arabia continued to undermine the Saudi rulers' legitimacy and inflamed anti-government Islamist militants, including bin Laden.
After the Gulf War, the establishment of permanent bases for non-Muslim U.S. troops in Saudi Arabia in connection with the Gulf War profoundly shocked and revolted bin Laden and other Islamist militants because the Saudi government claims legitimacy based on their role as guardians of the sacred Muslim cities of Mecca and Medina. According to reports (by the BBC and others), the 1990/91 deployment of U.S. military and demanded an end to the presence of foreign military bases in the country.
Bin Laden publicly denounced his government's dependence on the U.S. After Iraq invaded Kuwait in 1990, bin Laden offered to help defend Saudi Arabia (with 12,000 armed men) but was rebuffed by the Saudi government. The Soviet Union withdrew from Afghanistan in 1989 and bin Laden was lauded as a mujahideen hero in Saudi Arabia. government, which included many of the more militant MAK members he had met in Afghanistan.
By 1988, bin Laden had split from the MAK and established a new militant group, later dubbed al-Qaeda by the U.S. 59, emphasis added). involvement in that Afghan-Soviet war." (Marc Sageman, Understanding Terror Networks, Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2004, p. "The global Salafi jihad," he writes, "is without doubt an indirect consequence of U.S.
support for the Arab Afghan volunteers was funnelled through the Pakistani ISI at Pakistan's insistence. 201) and calls the notion of CIA training of future al Qaeda terrorists "sheer fantasy," he also notes that U.S. And while Marc Sageman, former CIA officer who worked closely with the mujahedin under Milton Bearden, makes clear that he does not believe the CIA ever came in direct contact with the foreign volunteers (an account refuted by Coll, see p. 129.) This account is also substantially backed up by John Cooley, Unholy Wars : Afghanistan, America and International Terrorism, New York, Pluto Press, 2002.
None of the players reckoned on these volunteers having their own agendas, which would eventually turn their hatred against the Soviets on their own regimes and the Americans." (Ahmed Rashid, Taliban New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2000, p. And the Saudis saw an opportunity to promote Wahabbism and get rid of its disgruntled radicals. Washington wanted to demonstrate that the entire Muslim world was fighting the Soviet Union alongside the Afghans and their American benefactors. The ISI had encouraged this since 1982 and by now all the other players had their reasons for supporting the idea.
According to Ahmed Rashid, Central Intelligence Agency Chief William Casey in 1986 "committed CIA support to a long-standing ISI initiative to recruit radical Muslims from around the world to come to Pakistan and fight with the Afghan Mujaheddin. The accounts of some journalists and investigators, however, do suggest that CIA money and weapons reached the Afghan Arabs and bin Laden indirectly through the ISI . 64-66.]. The 'let's blame everything bad that happens on the CIA' school of thought vastly overestimates the Agency's powers, both for good and ill." [Holy War, Inc.: Inside the Secret World of Osama bin Laden (New York: The Free Press, 2001), pp.
So the notion that the Agency funded and trained the Afghan Arabs is, at best, misleading. The CIA did not need the Afghan Arabs, and the Afghan Arabs did not need the CIA. the Afghan Arabs functioned independently and had their own sources of funding. ..
There was simply no point in the CIA and the Afghan Arabs being in contact with each other. .. the Afghans thought they were a pain in the ass." Similar sentiments from Afghans who appreciated the money that flowed from the Gulf but did not appreciate the Arabs' holier-than-thou attempts to convert them to their ultra-purist version of Islam. There were hundreds of thousands of Afghans all too willing to fight, and the Arabs who did come for jihad were "very disruptive .
Former CIA official Milt Bearden, who ran the Agency's Afghan operation in the late 1980s, says, "The CIA did not recruit Arabs," as there was no need to do so. The Afghan Arabs generally fought alongside those factions, which is how the charge arose that they were creatures of the CIA. ISI in turn made the decisions about which Afghan factions to arm and train, tending to favor the most Islamist and pro-Pakistan. The United States wanted to be able to deny that the CIA was funding the Afghan war, so its support was funneled through Pakistan's Inter Services Intelligence agency (ISI).
The truth is more complicated, tinged with varying shades of gray. "While the charges that the CIA was responsible for the rise of the Afghan Arabs might make good copy, they don't make good history. The State Department quotes CNN analyst Peter Bergen as saying:. .
aid went only to Afghan fighters, and that Afghan Arabs had their own sources of funding, an account also supported by Al Qaeda itself. government, which maintains that U.S. This account is vehemently denied by the U.S. Some argue that MAK was supported by the governments of Pakistan, the United States and Saudi Arabia, and that the three countries channelled their supplies through Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI).
(See: the History of Afghanistan.) By 1984 he had established an organization named Maktab al-Khadamat (MAK) (Office of Order in English), which funneled money, arms and Muslim fighters from around the world into the Afghan war. His wealth and connections permitted him to pursue his interest in supporting the mujahideen, Muslim guerrillas fighting the Soviet Union in Afghanistan following the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979. Bin Laden has several aliases and nicknames, including the Prince, the Emir, Abu Abdallah, Mujahid Shayekh, Hajj, and the Director. For this reason, although the Arabic convention would be to refer to him either as "Osama" or "Osama bin Laden," using "bin Laden" is in accordance with the family's own usage of the name and is the near-universal convention in Western references to him.
The family company is known as the Binladin Brothers for Contracting and Industry and is one of the largest corporations in Saudi Arabia. His full name means "Osama, son of Mohammed, son of `Awad, son of Laden." However, the bin Laden family (or "Binladin," as they prefer to be known) generally use the name as a surname, in the Western style. Strictly speaking, under the Arabic naming convention, it is incorrect to use "bin Laden" as though it were a Western surname. Officials at the United States Department of Defense encourage the now more commonly used "Osama" transliteration when his name became associated with the September 11th attacks in order to avoid confusion with U.S.A.M.A., the United States Army Medical Association.
The latter part of the name can also be found as ibn Laden, Binladen or Binladin. Less common renderings include Ussamah Bin Ladin and Oussama Ben Laden (used in French-language mass media). Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld). The FBI and Fox News use Usama bin Laden, often abbreviated to UBL (favored by U.S.
The form used here, Osama bin Laden, is used by most English-language mass media, including CNN and the BBC. Osama bin Laden's name can be transliterated in several ways. He reportedly suffers from various medical conditions including kidney disease. No proof of this claim, nor any supporting evidence, has ever surfaced.
This belief has been expressed several times, from many quarters . He is commonly thought to employ more than one. military figures claim that Bin Laden employs at least one double to act as a decoy, in order to evade would-be captors. U.S.
It is because of his quiet personality that many wonder how he could be the leader of a resistance movement. In personality, Bin Laden is described as a soft-spoken, mild mannered man, and despite his rhetoric, he is said to be charming, polite, and respectful. He wears a plain white turban and no longer dons the traditional Saudi male headdress. He has an olive complexion, is left-handed and usually walks with a cane.
Bin Laden is often described as lanky; the FBI describes him as tall and thin, being 6' 4" (193 cm) to 6' 5" (195 cm) tall and weighing 160 pounds (75 kg). There he began to build al-Qaeda and much of its current militant and governmental structure. Bin Laden left Saudi Arabia in 1992, moving to Sudan at the behest of its Islamist government. Disagreements and squabbling between Bin Laden and the Saudi royal family soon exploded into full-blown hostility, especially after US forces remained in Saudi Arabia upon liberating Kuwait.
Bin Laden, who had hated the United States even before the Gulf War, was outraged; he considered the presence of non-Muslim forces on Saudi soil as an affront to himself and to Muslims in general. Instead the government invited a coalition made up of forces from the United States and other non-Muslim nations to establish a base in Saudi Arabia. When Iraq under Saddam Hussein ordered a military invasion of Kuwait on August 2, 1990, Bin Laden called for jihad against Saddam and asked the Saudi government for permission to send jihadists to protect the country and help liberate Kuwait. Bin Laden eagerly sent money, supplies, and weapons to the jihadis in Afghanistan.
The Soviet invasion of Afghanistan resulted in a call to arms by religious leaders all over the Muslim world to liberate the country from pro-Soviet rule. He attended his son's wedding in January 2001, but since 9/11 is believed only to have had contact with his mother on one occasion. In 1994 bin Laden's family publicly disowned him, shortly before the Saudi Arabian government revoked his citizenship. branch of the World Congress of Muslim Youth in Falls Church, Virginia during the 1990s.
Omar and Abdallah were reportedly organizing the U.S. Najwa, a Syrian and his mother's niece, reportedly had 11 children by bin Laden, including Abdallah, Omar, Saad, and Muhammad.  Bin Laden has fathered at least 24 children. A female author named Kola Boof claims she was kept in Morocco against her will as a mistress for bin Laden in 1996, but the credibility of her claim is disputed.
Bin Laden reportedly married four other women, divorcing one. In 1974, at the age of 17, bin Laden married his first wife (and first cousin), Najwa Ghanem. Salem, Osama's oldest brother, took over the family business. After his father died in 1967, bin Laden inherited part of his father's estate in the form of shares in the family company.
He earned a degree in economics and public administation from King Abdul-Aziz University in Jeddah in 1981. As a college student, bin Laden studied business and project administration. . These claims, though widely reported in the British press in the aftermath of 9/11, are generally regarded by most other researchers as being somewhat dubious and unsubstantiated.
Bin Laden is supposed to have been in attendance at midweek European Cup Winners Cup fixtures in March and April of that year, and may even have travelled to Copenhagen in May to attend the Cup Winners Cup final. In his book Bin Laden: Behind The Mask Of Terror, author Adam Robinson claims that Bin Laden is a fan of the famous London-based soccer club Arsenal, and that he actually visited London several times in 1994 to attend matches at Arsenal's Highbury stadium. government has said it has never issued a visa for bin Laden; and it is possible bin Laden has never traveled outside of the Middle East. Even the truth of these trips has been called into question; the U.S.
According to The New Yorker , bin Laden only traveled outside of the Middle East three times: once to London for treatment when he was ten years old, to East Africa sometime in the 1970s, and once to the United States about 1978. Locals also claim he visited Sweden as an adult to buy real estate. Reports and photos exist of 22 members of his family holidaying in Falun, Sweden in 1971, dressed in the height of Western fashion. Although it has been disputed, bin Laden may have visited the West several times.
From 1968 to 1976, bin Laden attended the Al-Thager Model School in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. A woman who in 1971 had attended an English language course with bin Laden recalled him saying with some sadness that his mother was a concubine . Osama is the only son of the elder bin Laden's tenth wife, Hamida al-Attas, who is reportedly of Syrian descent. The large number of bin Laden siblings is the result of polygyny; his father was married ten times, although to no more than four women at a time per Islamic law.
His family originally came from Hadhramaut, Yemen and he was raised as a devout Sunni Muslim. In addition, various accounts place Osama as his seventeenth son, while others say he was the last of 25 sons. There is no definitive account of the number of children born to Muhammed bin Laden, but the number is generally put at 55. Osama bin Laden was born in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, to Muhammad Awad bin Ladin, a wealthy businessman involved in construction and with close ties to the Saudi royal family.
. While the FBI has a huge reward for his capture, the CIA seeks to kill him. The West, particularly the United States, persistently sees him as the leader of a terrorist organization, Al Qaeda, that seeks the destruction of the State of Israel and the USA and perhaps even the downfall of Europe. Bin Laden continues to have an immense amount of support and loyalty from much of the Muslim world.
The authenticity of these tapes, while still disputed, has been confirmed by the United States Central Intelligence Agency.  In January 2006, audiotapes purportedly from bin Laden were aired on all popular news media (audio , transcript ). The second report that bin Laden died in June 2005 was published in a Pakistani newspaper and although it has not been conclusively confirmed or refuted, few Western publications decided the news was worth reporting. The first report in December 2001 was quickly disproven when bin Laden issued a videotape.
Twice newspapers have reported his death. With the inhospitable mountainous terrain and uncertainty about the cooperation of Pakistani intelligence, the United States faces many difficulties in pursuing his capture, despite a wide array of sophisticated eavesdropping sensors deployed in the region . If bin Laden is in Pakistan, it is possible that he benefits from local support by the Waziri. While bin Laden's current whereabouts are unknown, the most popular assumption is that he is hiding in Pakistan's tribal region of Waziristan bordering Afghanistan, or, more specifically, near the small Pakistani market town of Chitral , .
An additional reward of $2 million is being offered by the Airline Pilots Association and the Air Transport Association. The United States Department of State is offering a reward of $25 million for information leading to bin Laden's capture. withdrew from these bases in 2003, stating that they were no longer necessary for their campaign in Iraq. The U.S.
According to a tape released after bin Laden's September 11 attacks, bin Laden's main grievances against the West and especially the United States, include support for the State of Israel, United States support for several dictatorial regimes in the Middle East, and the presence of United States military bases in Saudi Arabia, where the Islamic holy cities of Mecca and Medina are located. In addition to the attacks, several armed Islamist revivalist movements have been connected to Al Qaeda. There is evidence linking bin Laden and al-Qaeda to several attacks worldwide, the most destructive of which was the September 11, 2001 attacks on New York City and Washington, D.C., which killed at least 2,985 people. Usāmah bin Muhammad bin `Awad bin Lādin (born March 10, 1957; Arabic: أسامة بن محمد بن عوض بن لادن), commonly known as Osama bin Laden, or Usama bin Laden, (Arabic: أسامة بن لادن) is an Islamic fundamentalist and the founder of the militant organization al-Qaeda.