bin Laden, Osama bin Mohammad
1957 - Born on the 10th of March in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Mastermind of numerous terrorist attacks against the United States and other Western powers. Afghan-Sudanese (Saudi-born) businessman and terrorist leader - Bin Laden was one of more than 50 children of one of Saudi Arabia's wealthiest families. - He attended King Abdul Aziz University, where he received a degree in civil engineering. 1968-1976 - He attended the relatively secular Al-Thager Model School. 1974 - At the age of 17, he married his first wife, his first cousin from Syria, Najwa Ghanem. 1979 - Shortly after the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan, bin Laden, like thousands of other Muslims from throughout the world, joined the Afghan resistance, viewing it as his Muslim duty to repel the occupation. 1989 - After the Soviet withdrawal, bin Laden returned home as a hero, but he was quickly disappointed with what he perceived as the corruption of the Saudi government and of his own family. - His objection to the presence of U.S. troops in Saudi Arabia during the First Persian Gulf War led to a growing rift with his country's leaders. 1993 - He had purportedly formed a terrorist network known as al-Qaeda (Arabic: “the Base”), which consisted largely of militant Muslims bin Laden had met in Afghanistan. - Drew a bombing of New York City's World Trade Center. 1994 - The Saudi government confiscated his passport after accusing him of subversion, and he fled to The Sudan. - Stripped of Saudi citizenship following increased militancy in seeking to remove non-Muslims, especially US troops, from territory held sacred by Muslims. 1996 - He organized terrorist training camps and from where he was eventually expelled. - He later returned to Afghanistan, where he received protection from its ruling Taliban militia. 1996-1998 - The group funded and organized several attacks worldwide, including detonating truck bombs against American targets in Saudi Arabia, killing tourists in Egypt, and simultaneously bombing the U.S. embassies in Nairobi, Kenya, and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, which altogether killed nearly 300 people. - A self-styled scholar, issued a series of fatwas (Arabic: “religious opinions”) declaring a holy war against the United States, which he accused, among other things, of looting the natural resources of the Muslim world and aiding and abetting the enemies of Islam. 1998 - Indicted in United States federal court for his alleged involvement in the 98' U.S. embassy bombings. - Apparent financial sponsor of terrorist bombings of US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, prompting US retaliation by missile attacks on suspected terrorist sites in Afghanistan and Sudan 1999 - Placed on FBI's Ten Most Wanted list. 2000 - He led the suicide bombing of the U.S. warship Cole in the Yemeni port of Aden. 2001 - He drew another attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City and the Pentagon near Washington, D.C., on the 11th of September. - Following the September 11th attacks, the United States led a coalition that overthrew the Taliban and sent bin Laden into hiding. - Supported mujahedeen resistance fighters against Soviet-installed regime in Afghanistan. He was the leader of Al Qaeda terrorist group. 2004 - Nearly three years passed, during which time U.S. forces hunted bin Laden along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border. - Bin Laden emerged in a videotaped message in October, less than a week before that year's U.S. presidential election, in which he claimed responsibility for the September 11th attacks.
Page last updated: 3:34pm, 23rd Dec '11