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(photo credit: AP)
US President George W. Bush said Saturday that Osama bin Laden's first video appearance in three years is a reminder of "the dangerous world in which we live."
"It's important that we show resolve and determination to protect ourselves, deny al-Qaida safe havens," Bush said during a visit to Australia.
Israel Radio quoted top CIA officials as saying Al Qaida was likely to attempt a major terror attack on US soil in the near future, the target of which would probably be related in a significant way to the American economy.
The video was released just days before the sixth anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks on the United States that killed almost 3,000 people.
In a 30-minute speech addressed to Americans, bin Laden boasts about the impact of the 2001 attacks, mocks the democratic system of government in the United States and lambastes the Bush administration for initiating the war in Iraq.
Bush made the rare move of speaking about an al-Qaida video, answering a question during a photo opportunity with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. The two leaders are among 21 leaders in Australia for the annual summit of Pacific Rim nations.
The president said it was interesting that bin Laden brought up the Iraq war.
"Iraq is part of this war against extremists," Bush said. "If al-Qaida bothers to mention Iraq, it's because they want to achieve their objectives in Iraq, which is to drive us out."
The tape, Bush said, is "a reminder about the dangerous world in which we live, and it is a reminder that we must pull together to protect our people against these extremists who murder the innocent in order to achieve their political objective."