Osama bin Laden and Al Qaeda

The Taliban

  • One of the mujahideen groups that formed when the Soviet Union was invading Afghanistan
  • came to power after war with the Soviets
  • hold a very strict interpretation of Islamic law
  • provided refuge for Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda


  • network of extreamists organized by Osama Bin Laden
  • worked to make alliances with other radical groups
  • goal is to drive Americans and American influence out of Muslim nations
  • performed many terrorists acts including the most famous 9/11

Osama Bin Laden

  • studied with radical Islamic thinkers
  • top advisor was al- Zawahiri
  • financed the Taliban
  • In 1979 the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan, so bin Laden traveled to Peshawar to join the resistance.
  • When Osama traveled to Peshawar he used his extensive connections to win financial and moral support for the mujahideen. He also encouraged young men to come from all over the Middle East to be a part of the Afghan jihad.
  • In an attempt to protect himself from arrest and win more recruits for Al-Qaeda, bin Laden moved from Sudan to Afghanistan in 1996.

Terrorists attacks leading up to 9/11 by Al-Qaeda

  • 1982 - US Embassy in Beirut is bombed
  • 1982 - US Marine base in Beirut is bombed
  • 1985 - The ship the Achille lauro is seized
  • 1988 - Passenger jet Pam Am Flight 103 is blown up
  • 1993 - 5 killed and hundreds injured by a bomb placed in the World Trade Center
  • 2000 - US warship USS Cole attacked
  • 2001 - Twin Towers crashed into