The re-emergence of Osama bin Laden last week, even in the form of a quiet voice on a scratchy audio tape, confirmed two things about American politics.
First, any statement by the al-Qaeda leader still has the capacity to make every other story in the US appear trivial by comparison.
Secondly, pronouncements such as the one released last Thursday tend to be met by a twin-pronged approach from the White House: the Bush administration insists...
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