Details about the killing of bin Laden remain obscure. The mission, a joint operation between CIA and Special Forces, appeared to have been mounted from a US-controlled air base in Pakistan – without the advance knowledge of Pakistan’s government. US sources say Osama was shot twice in the head; his son was also killed.
The real reason was more likely to prevent bin Laden’s burial site from becoming a shrine and, some cynics will assert, getting rid of the evidence. Expect endless claims that a bin Laden double was killed while the real McCoy still haunts Pakistan’s badlands. Various fakes videotapes used to depict bin Laden as the mastermind of the 9/11 attacks used doubles.
To people of the Muslim world, where many hailed bin Laden as a hero and liberator from Western domination, his killing in Pakistan will recall American gangland rub-outs and bodies dumped in New Jersey’s waters and swamps. Particularly after NATO warplanes killed Muammar Gadaffi’s youngest son and three grandchildren in Libya.
It is most unfortunate that bin Laden was literally rubbed out. If he could have been taken alive, the co-founder of al-Qaida should have been brought to the United States to stand trial in New York City, or, failing that, on a military base – but with lawyers and a civilian jury under full US law.
The whole story of 9/11 and al-Qaida remains murky and confused. Fully a third of Americans don’t accept the official US government version of 9/11, believing the US government or Israel were somehow involved – without any conclusive evidence but a lot of angry questions. (read more)