The US government is damping down speculation that terrorists are preparing an attack on American soil in the wake of a new tape from Osama Bin Laden.
However, Washington is reportedly sending a bulletin to local security offices asking them to review the current suspects on their watch lists. American Vice President Dick Cheney said: “There’s still hard work ahead because we are dealing with enemies who have declared an intention to bring great harm to any nation which opposes their aims. Their prime targets are the United States and the American people. And so we have a continuing responsibility to lead in this fight.” The voice on the tape is believed to be that of bin Laden, the mastermind behind the September 11th attacks. The US has dismissed his offer of a conditional truce in return for withdrawal from Iraq. Terrorism expert Ben Venzke says it proves bin Laden is active: “These are not the kinds of things you would be doing if you were so on the run that you were unable to anything to function or to stay informed of what’s going on in the world. So we think these are good indicators that if they’re able to do all of this they are probably are very able to do planning and to work towards conducting other attacks,” he said. Analysts believe Bin Laden’s offer of a truce is a bid to divide public opinion in America as pressure grows to begin reducing troop numbers in Iraq. The tape is believed to be just a few weeks old.