Bin Laden has reappeared. It was only a matter of time really.
Prior to this, no one was really sure if he was dead or alive. In my view, that would have make him more powerful, but I have to admit that the powers-that-be have done a good job of making us "forget" about him (but not Al-Qaeda) - diminishing his power. So it was only a matter of time before he resurfaced, just to remind us that he's still around.
However, I get a number of things from the reports of his tapes. Firstly, he's actually trying to be reasonable (in a terrorist type way), by explaining his position in a way that suggests he would stop under some circumstances. But no matter how "simple" he makes it sound, that's just way to difficult for Americans who are so utterly intrenched in the opposite view point. I suspect OBL just helped Bush stay in office.
The other thing that worries me is that US officials tried to stop Al-Jazeera broadcasting the tape. What else are we missing?