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September 15, 2009 8:08 AM   Subscribe

Bin Laden's Reading List for Americans

“After you read the suggested books, you will know the truth, and you will be greatly shocked by the scale of concealment that has been exercised on you:"
  1. The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy by John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt. Previously on Metafilter.
  2. Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid by Jimmy Carter
  3. According to the translation, “The Apology of a Hired Killer.” The book is said to have been written by “a former CIA agent who lived in two cultures, whose conscience was awakened in his third decade and decided to say the truth despite threats.” While there seems to be no book of that title and description, bin Laden may have been reading Confessions of an Economic Hit Man by John Perkins.
posted by up in the old hotel (50 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite

 
Let me be the first to say that Bin Laden's favourite books suck.
posted by daniel_charms at 8:13 AM on September 15, 2009


4. Chicken Soup for the Fundamentalist Soul.
posted by octobersurprise at 8:15 AM on September 15, 2009 [8 favorites]


Oddly... number 7? Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian: The Junior Novelization
posted by The Deej at 8:16 AM on September 15, 2009 [6 favorites]


4. The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown. What I love about Dan Brown's Robert Langdon is that he approaches conspiracies with the same skepticism and disbelief that we all do. The working title of this work was The Solomon Key and I can only hope that Dan Brown will lead us into the mystical and secretive world of the international Jewry that controls the American Empire. Death to America, but not until I get my copy of The Lost Symbol!
posted by geoff. at 8:17 AM on September 15, 2009 [4 favorites]


Yeah, but what's his stance on quotation marks?
posted by rokusan at 8:20 AM on September 15, 2009


Reading? Fuck that shit! Homeboy can fly an airplane into me right now because there's no way I'm having anything to do with a medium where people don't get voted out of a mansion every week.
posted by "Elbows" O'Donoghue at 8:21 AM on September 15, 2009 [18 favorites]


Osama's Book Club.
posted by Joe Beese at 8:22 AM on September 15, 2009


#0: Not-the-Bible-anymore
posted by DU at 8:23 AM on September 15, 2009


The teabaggers will host a Book Burning Party that will draw 1,000,000 60,000 people. The only problem will be that they will all run out and buy each and every one of these books, putting them all on the NYT Best Seller Lists. They'll claim the books are on there because it's a "liberal media plot" and we're all doomed...
This stuff just writes itself now.
posted by msbutah at 8:23 AM on September 15, 2009 [6 favorites]


Oh, just get on shelfari like everybody else, you damn drama queen.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 8:24 AM on September 15, 2009 [3 favorites]


I was about to come in and try to smack down Confessions of an Economic Hit Man, which I foolishly bought before reading reviews, but saw that the FPP article itself did a great job og it already.
posted by FuManchu at 8:26 AM on September 15, 2009


After you, the American people, play "Shadow of the Colossus" for the Second Playstation video machine, you will be greatly shocked that a video game can have the same emotional pull as a movie, or a poem.
posted by Damn That Television at 8:32 AM on September 15, 2009 [13 favorites]


They don't call him Remainder Bin Laden for nothing.
posted by Phanx at 8:39 AM on September 15, 2009 [25 favorites]


I thought there was some connection between Confessions of an Economic Hit Man and mediamatters.org, but now I don't see it. Maybe it was some other book. Or website. Or alternate universe.
posted by DU at 8:42 AM on September 15, 2009


8. The Seventy-Two Virgins That You Meet In Heaven
posted by Avenger at 8:42 AM on September 15, 2009 [7 favorites]


9. Meghari and Me
posted by jquinby at 8:46 AM on September 15, 2009


Why the fuck do we care what he wants people to read?
posted by jeffamaphone at 8:49 AM on September 15, 2009


I'm glad Osama is finally showing some concern for the Palestinians considering he all but ignored them before.
posted by PenDevil at 8:49 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


10. Eat Pray Love, you guys, soooo eye-opening.
posted by naju at 8:49 AM on September 15, 2009


I have this mental image of being cornered and harangued by Bin Laden at a cocktail party. We're all drunk, he's sloppily swishing his club soda. He keeps telling me to read these books, except he keeps getting the titles wrong and saying, "Never mind, it's something like that. Anyway, it will totally expose the imperialism of your nation." And I'm like, "Yeah, OK, but see, the thing is, I've already got a bunch of books to read in this pile by my desk, and I usually just pick up whatever looks good at the library, so I don't really have the time…"

He cuts me off saying, "That's why your people deserve to die. They've forsaken the book. No one reads anymore, they only want to watch the decadent TV like that whore Octomom."

And I'm trying to make eye contact with my girlfriend, like, you wanna go? But she doesn't see me, and now he's off on some jeremiad about Project Runway and so I just kind of blurt out that I have this thing I've been working on and I wonder if he can take a look…

He suddenly goes cold and says, "I will not read your fucking screenplay."
posted by klangklangston at 8:52 AM on September 15, 2009 [44 favorites]


83: Choose Your Own Adventure: The Phantom Submarine

"From Secret of the Pyramids (CYOA #19) to Hurricane! (CYOA #82), Richard Brightfield raised his plaint against the Zionist dogs who threaten the faithful. He might have strewed gold ingots in a swine trough to better effect. Such is the willed ignorance of the American: he will not even heed a prophet of his own country.

"Before we bring the fire upon you, look well to his second book, The Phantom Submarine. Choose wisely in reading it, and you will not need the divine abilities of its hero to see that what truly lurks beneath the waves is the Satanic Bahamut of American hubris."
posted by Your Disapproving Father at 8:52 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


Why the hell haven't we caught this fucker yet? Serious, full-bore bulldozer invasion, billion dollar bounty, hell, get the FBI agents who tracked down the dickhead who lit up CIA headquarters with an AK, in the mountains of Kashmir, and then arrested and tried him. What the hell is the problem, here?

Oh, yeah, we were too busy trying to conquer Iraq to look after national security.
posted by Slap*Happy at 8:56 AM on September 15, 2009


11. Godless: The Church of Liberalism by Ann Coulter
posted by Avenger at 8:56 AM on September 15, 2009


11. Twentieth Century Eightball, Dan Clowes. It was when I read the chapter "Needledick the Bugfucker" that I knew America had to suffer.
posted by COBRA! at 8:58 AM on September 15, 2009 [3 favorites]


13. Holy Terror, Batman! Frank Miller. I have an advance copy, and you wouldn't believe this shit! It'll blow your mind, squares. Also, I like the way Frank the Tank draws me.
posted by COBRA! at 9:00 AM on September 15, 2009


You're recommending books now? How has it come to this, I thought you were a hero?

Where's the old spirit, the spark of fundamentalist fervor you used to embody? I want back the old Osama, the Osama who valued action above words, the Osama who stood against the Great Satan, who defied capture despite all the odds. I don't want an Osama who sits in a cave browsing Amazon writing book reviews. Why have you sunk so low Osama?

Do you watch the direction that America is being taken in and feel powerless to stop it? Do you believe that your voice isn’t loud enough to be heard above the noise anymore? Do you read the headlines everyday and feel an empty pit in your stomach…as if you’re completely alone?

I want the old Osama, I want you back as you were on September 12, 2001.
posted by Sova at 9:01 AM on September 15, 2009 [3 favorites]


14. Amazing Spider-Man #36 -- I made Dr. Doom cry. Do you understand the import of this? Some infidels asserted that this was merely lazy, jingoistic writing that abandoned any pretense of following a characterization established over the prior 40 years, but believers understood that it was because I am a bad-ass motherfucker.
posted by brain_drain at 9:03 AM on September 15, 2009 [5 favorites]


jeffamaphone : Why the fuck do we care what he wants people to read?

Because if he had recommended Twilight or The Celestine Prophecy, Americans might have finally woken up and realized that this guy is a monster who needs to be stopped.
posted by quin at 9:03 AM on September 15, 2009 [4 favorites]


The working title of this work was The Solomon Key

You laugh, but Dan Brown's conspiracy theories are obviously all true. How else could a scribbler with such a gob-stoppering lack of writing talent or imagination sell 80 million copies of anything? And how did he manage to publish 3 books before the Da Vinci code? He must have snuck in a camera while served drinks at Bohemian Grove in the 70's. Naked man pile with Bush the Elder and Kissinger? Hello, bestseller!

Brown's books are the naughty little secret of the kind of die-hard Catholics who consult the blacklist before going to the movies. It allows them to indulge in some petty fantasy rebellion against the entity that has entirely supplanted their superego. It's like a bratty teenager telling his impressionist artist mother, "Monet sucks! They don't even look like water lilies!" as he stuffs his Ansel Adams books under his mattress. This is the point of rebellion, and this is you missing it.

Dan Brown fans, watch me blow your mind:

Graham Hancock
posted by Pastabagel at 9:04 AM on September 15, 2009


15. Are You There, Allah? It's Me, Osama - This coming-of-age tale will resonate with the faithful across the globe. Any reports of graphic descriptions of menstruation are filthy infidel lies.
posted by total warfare frown at 9:08 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


The Pet Goat?
posted by uncleozzy at 9:08 AM on September 15, 2009


Shit, now Oprah's gonna start killing motherfuckers.
posted by kid ichorous at 9:08 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


Like she didn't already. No one's seen Rikki Lake since the late '90s.
posted by klangklangston at 9:16 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


"A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Jihad"
posted by ColdChef at 9:20 AM on September 15, 2009 [6 favorites]


"Green Eggs and Anything But Ham"
posted by ColdChef at 9:24 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


The Suicider House Rules
posted by ColdChef at 9:25 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


The Complete Peanuts: Vol #9 1967 to 1968: Here we first see the machinations of the imperialist gang of pigs holding down the proud black man, Franklin. His need for liberation is mocked openly by the false battle between the World War I Ace and the Red Baron, who are fighting not to rescue him, but truly vying for his soul. Also the forceful removal of the football (representing true freedom) from the grasp of the deluded citizen by the conniving, secretive government is especially profound.
posted by 1f2frfbf at 9:47 AM on September 15, 2009 [2 favorites]


After abandoning the rhetoric and nonsense from Bin Laden, there remains some truth to be found.

The caveat here is really separating foreign policy vs. an avowed terrorist determined to "wage war" on a physical and ideological front on behalf of an entire religion without popular support. It is arguable that silence is the equivalent of support, but within regional polling, i.e. the middle east, he is a detractor from an open dialogue with the west.

Bin Laden et al, present non-winnable arguments for Israel, Islam and the region. But they manage to highlight inconsistencies on foreign policy and inadequacies across all major governments.

First, evaluating Israel is anything but an easy game. It's rigged from the start whether pro or anti. The Holy Land has become a pawn for larger interests whilst the spectators easily create binding viewpoints no matter how far fetched.

Keep in mind one of the worlds' former superpowers spends an immense amount of money to ensure via military/research/spending there isn't a 6 day war all over again; this time with the results opposite. Also, given history there is a modern day taboo held over the western world for constructive criticism. Yes, it requires it, but no one seems able to address some core concerns or questions.

Second, Al Queda argues for a type of Islam. Religion is flexible. It always has been. Historically and in Bin Laden's approach, he (they) are the one solution. Unfortunately, Islam and people don't work this way. The majority of peoples affected by Bin Laden's particular brand of bullshit really don't want it.

Last, but surely not least, the Middle East is as rich in interference as it is in innovation.

If only a new messiah or prophet could come down to earth and set things straight.

Sigh.
posted by Funmonkey1 at 9:53 AM on September 15, 2009


I was about to come in and try to smack down Confessions of an Economic Hit Man, which I foolishly bought before reading reviews, but saw that the FPP article itself did a great job og it already.

yeah, I'm definitely going to opt out of re-reading this one from my new "fall reads! by osama" booklist. such trash.
posted by Think_Long at 10:23 AM on September 15, 2009


Psychonavigation: “first hand accounts of how diverse tribal cultures travel beyond time and space by means of visions and dream wanderings;”

In other words, dude's listened to Fleetwood Mac's "Hypnotized" a few too many times.
posted by blucevalo at 10:33 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


"Garfield Bigger Than Life" I love it when the cat eats the lasagna!
posted by jefbla at 11:03 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


Awww...bin Laden's giving us a reading list? That's bullshit! That's worse than when Abu Nidal made us keep that summer journal.

You know in Peru? The Shining Path? They just make people do dioramas.
posted by PlusDistance at 11:24 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


I was working up my own joke until I hit upon ColdChef's. Well played, old boy!
A tip of the hat to you.
posted by barrett caulk at 11:55 AM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


Stephen Walt: Why is Osama reading my book?

From the original article:
In an article for Foreign Policy last week, The Next Osama, Ms. Farrall’s colleague, Mr. Brachman, argued that even though Mr. Bin Laden remains Al Qaeda’s figurehead, another commander, Sheik Abu Yahya al-Libi, may already have surpassed him as the most important leader in the organization. Unlike Mr. Bin Laden, who seems to regard Americans as a nation of intellectuals who just need to read the right books, Mr. Abu Yahya, who was in American custody in Afghanistan until he escaped in 2005, formed his impressions of Americans first-hand. At Bagram airbase, Mr. Brachman writes, "he passed time by intimately studying his American captors as they aimlessly surfed the Internet or complained to him about their dysfunctional childhoods."
posted by russilwvong at 1:36 PM on September 15, 2009 [1 favorite]


18. ANYTHING by Tim Robbins -- The man makes poetry of language and truly knows what it's like to be a stranger in this world. I especially recommend Another Roadside Explosion, Half Deranged in Farah/Panjshir, and Fierce Infidels Go Home to Your Haram Dog-Loving Abomination of a Country. But don't crap out and get the movie version of Even Jihadists Get the Blues...that Uma Thurman catastrophe could suck the sand out of my kingdom.
posted by kittyprecious at 2:07 PM on September 15, 2009


crap, crap, crap: that's TOM Robbins
posted by kittyprecious at 2:08 PM on September 15, 2009


I wonder what fiction he reads? I don't trust anyone who doesn't read fiction.
posted by mrgrimm at 3:10 PM on September 15, 2009


He's currently winding his way through the Babysitters Club series, but doesn't feel comfortable recommending it until he knows how it ends.
posted by klangklangston at 3:26 PM on September 15, 2009


13. The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test - OMG! lol.
posted by Sailormom at 3:54 PM on September 15, 2009


19. Infinite Jihad
posted by nfg at 9:43 AM on September 16, 2009


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