August 23, 2017

Pornography among items seized in Bin Laden raid

The pornography find is probably a fact, but it is always hard for dead people to defend their reputation.

The propaganda war over the assassination of Osama Bin Laden heated up today with the revelation from US officials that a stash of pornography was among the items seized by US Navy SEALS in the 2nd May raid.

The officials are at pains to point out that it is unclear who the material belonged to and there is no way to know whether bin Laden had viewed it.

That is not the point though. The intention is to damage the ‘saint like’ image that Bin Laden has cultivated over the years. It works in the West where we are used to many religious leaders falling off the morality perch. It is hard to see this sort of revelation doing anything to damage Bin Laden’s image in the Arab world.

The other male occupants living at the compound were Bin Laden’ s son and two other adult male couriers.

The pornogrphy announcement sounds like more solid evidence than the other major bit of mis-information about the raid – the US government assertion that bin Laden hid behind a woman in the compound as a ”human shield” on the night of the raid. This was later changed, saying she had rushed at one of the Navy SEALs and was shot in the calf.

The SEALs fatally shot bin Laden in a post-midnight raid May 2 at his hidden compound in the Pakistani army town of Abbottabad, shooting him in the head and chest when he ducked away from the raiders into his bedroom – they thought, reaching for a weapon.

After Bin Laden was killed, the raiders confiscated what US officials called a ”treasure trove” of information from bin Laden’s second-floor office.

The items included a handwritten journal, five computers, 10 hard drives and 110 flash drives seized at the site.

All the media taken from the site is now being analyzed by a CIA-led team.

The material includes a record of emails that were sent by flash or thumb drives, carried out by couriers on foot, and transmitted at internet cafes, giving bin Laden access to al-Qaeda’s offshoots inside Pakistan, and as far away as Yemen and Europe.

The emails show he helped chose target cities and guide overall the overall militant strategy, encouraging followers to attack soft US targets like smaller, less protected cities in the American heartland, aiming to take as many casualties as possible.

Bin Laden’s handwritten journal includes his own philosophical debates over how to force the US government to withdraw from the Arab world, and included musings over how to kill President Barack Obama, US officials say.

Bin Laden concluded he was too well protected.