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TikTok shredded as Osama bin Laden’s ‘Letter to America’ gets viral praise: ‘Terrorist propaganda’



The text of an inflammatory “letter to America” from 9/11 mastermind Osama bin Laden has gone viral on TikTok and drawn praise from young users – and US lawmakers from both sides of the aisle are blasting the China-owned app for promoting “terrorist propaganda.”

In the letter, bin Laden claimed that he orchestrated the deadly attacks on the World Trade Center that killed nearly 3,000 Americans because the US “attacked us in Palestine.”

The terrorist also described the creation of Israel as a “crime which must be erased.”

The Guardian, which had published the full text of the letter in 2002, pulled down the letter on Wednesday, citing the fact in a statement that it was being “widely shared on social media without the full context. Therefore we have decided to take it down and direct readers to the news article that originally contextualized it instead.”

Among the TikTok users promoting the letter was Lynette Adkins — a social-media influencer who has been profiled in the Los Angeles Times.

In the video, which has received nearly 100,000 likes and more than 5,500 comments since it was posted on Wednesday, Adkins told her followers to “stop what they’re doing right now and go read a letter to America.”

Adkins followed up with several other posts, including one in which she discussed “three movies to watch after you’ve read ‘a letter to America’” and another in which she reacted to The Guardian taking down the text and declared “America is losing the PR war bad.”

“The Guardian taking that post down is actually one of the worst things that they could’ve done.  I don’t know who was behind it or what the reasoning was, but I feel like it literally just confirmed everything that we read in the letter,” Adkins said.

Many of the TikTok users promoting the letter were women.

A second said she would “never look at life the same, I will never look at this country the same. Please read it and if you have read it, let me know if you are also going through an existential crisis in this very moment, because in the last 20 minutes, the entire viewpoint on the entire life I have believed and I have lived has changed.”

Lynnette Adkins was among the TikTok users who posted the video.
TikTok/@lynetteadkins

Another social media user whose video went viral said that after reading the letter, “it becomes apparent to me that the actions of 9/11 and those acts committed against the US and its people were all just the buildup of our government failing other nations.”

Elsewhere, TikTok user @Raeyreads posted the full text of bin Laden’s letter to her TikTok account, where it has received more than 1 million views.

“It’s crazy that we are JUST now finding out about this. The U.S. government truly believes they are untouchable and never learned from the past,” one user wrote in response.

“The fact I agree with a lot of what he’s saying…. explains why the Us government didn’t publicize this or teach us about it,” another said.

The videos in support of Bin Laden surfaced just days after The Post reported that several Republican lawmakers had renewed their calls for TikTok to be banned for spreading content that critics deemed as anti-Israel during the nation’s ongoing war with Hamas.

Critics from both political parties have alleged that TikTok, which is owned by Beijing-based ByteDance, is effectively a mass surveillance and propaganda tool for the Chinese Communist Party.

TikTok has repeatedly denied wrongdoing.

Osama bin Laden’s letter originally surfaced in 2002.
Universal History Archive/UIG/Shutterstock

Freelance journalist Yashar Ali shared a number of the viral video clips on X, saying without criticizing any of the posts that the “TikToks are from people of all ages, races, ethnicities, and backgrounds. Many of them say that reading the letter has opened their eyes, and they’ll never see geopolitical matters the same way again.”

Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ) said the footage showed “how China-owned TikTok is pushing pro-terrorist propaganda to influence Americans.”

“These people are sympathizing with Osama bin Laden – the terrorist responsible for 9/11 and thousands of American deaths,” Gottheimer said. “TikTok must be banned or sold to an American company.”

Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ) called for TikTok to be banned or sold.
Getty Images

Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) described TikTok as “a geyser of terrorist propaganda – and the most effective surveillance tool for a foreign government ever invented.”

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), another vocal advocate for a TikTok ban in the US, also chimed in on the alarming situation.

“Now trending on social media (especially TikTok) people saying that after reading Bin Laden’s ‘Letter to America,’ they now understand terrorism is a legitimate method of resistance against ‘oppression’ and America deserved to be attacked of 9/11,” Rubio said.

Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) is pictured.
AP

TikTok did not immediately return The Post’s request for comment.

The Guardian’s website now displays a message to readers explaining that the text had been removed.

“This page previously displayed a document containing, in translation, the full text of Osama bin Laden’s “letter to the American people”, as reported in the Observer on Sunday 24 November 2002. The document, which was published here on the same day, was removed on 15 November 2023,” the message said.





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