Eli Lake reports that “America’s counterterrorism community is warning that Al Qaeda may launch more overseas operations to influence the presidential elections in November,” noting that “bin Laden has sought to influence democratic elections in the past”:
In the week before the 2004 American presidential election, Mr. bin Laden recorded a video message to the American people promising repercussions if President Bush were re-elected. In later messages, Al Qaeda’s leader claimed credit for helping elect Mr. Bush in 2004.
Interestingly, Lake doesn’t mention why bin Laden would claim credit for having helped elect Bush, or why the CIA concluded that electing Bush was, in fact, bin Laden’s aim: Because Bush’s war on terror has been a propaganda, recruiting, and training bonanza for Al Qaeda.
Given that the only difference between McCain’s and Bush’s approach to the war on terror is that McCain promises more of it and harder, it’s not really difficult to guess which of the candidates a new Al Qaeda intervention would be intended to help.