News24

What 'really' happened to bin Laden?

2012-04-29 10:34

Abbottabad - A year after Osama bin Laden's death, little is known about what the Pakistani authorities knew of his presence, allowing wild theories on what "really" happened to flourish.

Sitting on a rock by his garlic patch in the Bilal Town district of Abbottabad, around 80km north of Islamabad, Zain Mohammad says he wishes people would stop calling him "bin Laden's neighbour".

The nickname has stuck since last May, when a US special forces raid killed the 9/11 mastermind just a few metres from his house.

He's not embarrassed, he says, just concerned for the truth. Like almost everyone else in this part of Abbottabad, a quiet town tucked in the foothills of the Himalayas, he doesn't believe bin Laden was ever there.

But what about the American raid, the gunfire and explosions, the widows and children found in the house?

Rumours

"I don't think bin Laden was here. Only innocent people, with no links with al-Qaeda or other militant groups, lived there and were martyred," he said.

Aurangzeb, the head of a local school, is equally confident.

"Bin Laden was not here. His family maybe, but not him. This is just a drama set up by Americans with the complicity of the Pakistani army, which can do anything for money, they are just beggars!" he said.

It is a popular theory in the area. A local journalist says people are simply unwilling to accept such a notorious character was living in their midst.

"The reality is they are ashamed that bin Laden was hiding there while at the same time groups affiliated with al-Qaeda killed thousands of people all over the country with their suicide bombings," he said.

On the morning of May 2 last year, the same shame, along with fear, was felt at the highest levels of Pakistan's all-powerful military, a security source said, reiterating the intelligence service's line that they knew nothing about bin Laden's presence in Pakistan - a theory that has cut little ice in Washington.

"Military chiefs felt betrayed by the US, who did not tell them before the raid," the official said.

"There was above all an element of fear among them when they realised that they were unable to control all their units and to know if some of them, linked to militants, helped bin Laden to hide there."

Rare admission

In a sign of the gravity of the situation, General Shuja Pasha, head of the Inter Services Intelligence agency, made a rare admission in May when he acknowledged failings over bin Laden before parliament.

But he said little more, and the veil once again came down on the bin Laden affair.

For months the army barred all access to the Abbottabad house, before demolishing it suddenly in February, while the Americans refused to release a single photograph of bin Laden

So the rumour mill began to whir: some believe the Americans brought bin Laden alive from Afghanistan and killed him in Abbottabad to smear Pakistan's reputation. Others insist the Saudi terror mastermind is still alive.

Mystery also surrounds bin Laden's three widows and children who lived with him in Abbottabad and were held by the Pakistanis after the Americans left them behind.

They were deported from Pakistan to Saudi Arabia on Friday after almost a year in custody, in which they did not make a single public appearance, creating yet more wild rumours.

Betrayal

Last month a retired Pakistani general claimed one of bin Laden's wives betrayed him to the Americans in a fit of jealousy over a younger wife.

And a week before the deportation, a police officer guarding the house where the family were being held told AFP that one of the wives had given birth a few days earlier - 11 months after the death of the presumed father.

Will the full story of bin Laden's time on the run in Pakistan and who knew about it ever emerge? In a country which seems to specialise in political and military mysteries, it looks unlikely.

The assassins of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto, killed more than four years ago, have yet to be brought to justice and the death of military ruler General Zia-ul Haq nearly 25 years ago is still shrouded in mystery.

For the intelligence services, crazy theories serve a useful function, the security official explained.

"For the vast majority of the population, often uneducated, the army prefers to let conspiracy theories flourish instead of using transparency that could bring a greater shame, so people don't entirely lose faith in the intelligence agencies' ability to protect them from danger," he said.

Comments
  • Rob - 2012-04-29 11:05

    Who cares ? He's dead. Killed like the snivelling rat that he was, in some Pakistani hovel. Conspiracy nutters will tell you otherwise though. Viva America, enemy to the Muslim world & the threat of Islam.

      goyougoodthing - 2012-04-29 12:39

      The USA is the world's biggest terrorist and it continues to support terrorist regimes.

      Ari - 2012-04-29 12:42

      And of course, the "official" version did not amount to a conspiracy? Some Arabs in a cave in the mountains fooled the entire US Intelligence force? Viva America?? You read too many corporate owned newspapers and no alternative views - because, of course, anything that upsets the "official" version must be a conspiracy and all conspiracies are, by definition, b##lsh1t. Now you can go outside an play again, there's a good boy.

      Dawood - 2012-04-29 14:00

      @ Rob u seem the same racist,gullible fool that is hoodwinked by the few in the American admin. that thrives on idiots like you to enrich big business and inturn themselves. Sad for you and your heroes that Bin Laden died of natural causes in 2008. But hey,theres a fool like yourself thats born everyday and the big business hopes theres many like you around. Islam and muslims are of no threat to anybody,but you might like to know that its the fastest growing religion(way of life) in the world(western world). The threat it causes is to thieves,corrupt politicians,bankers and others whom thrive on a system of injustices.Therefore it is attacked by these economic terrorists on a daily basis.AND sad for you , you and billions of others are only blind,illiterate,and foolish ponds in the entire equation.

      Rob - 2012-04-29 14:50

      @ Dawood. LOL. You really are a 3rd class idiot. Your attempts to engage me @ every turn along with the drivel you post, in defence of your muslim, islamist brothers who are nothing more than a indoctrinated, brainwashed, bunch of idiots who belong in the stone age, really leaves me laughing. Big ups to America for sticking it big time to those that support terrorists acts on the free world.

      Preshen - 2012-04-30 09:44

      Bin Laden was staying with 4 wives in the same house I think he called the Navy Seal

      louis.pienaar1 - 2012-05-02 17:49

      Hahahaha Preshen, you gave me an ideea!

  • John - 2012-04-29 11:05

    Here is a conspiracy theory for you: The US did not know whether Bin Laden was alive or dead, so, they staged his death. Staging it could have one of two outcomes: (a) Bin Laden would have surfaced to debunk the myth that the US killed him and they would know for certain that he was alive and could possibly obtain a lead on where he is (b) he did not surface and they would know that he is dead.

      Burtfred - 2012-04-29 11:13

      If your theory is true, the American government would have staged the act just before the presidential elections.

      yusuf.rildwanabiayo - 2012-04-29 11:30

      Before i can believe that bin laden is death america most show de picture to the world as a proof that is true dat bin laden is dead.because when sadam hoseni was kill we watch the video

      AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-04-29 11:43

      Would it not be great,if News24.com would have a seperate site for those with these childish conspiracy stories, so most of us reading these sites, don't have to be boooooooooooored with this endless CRAP !!!

      Tony Lapson - 2012-04-29 12:30

      Anthony perhaps people should just join the herd, and believe everything they read.

      gerhard.nel - 2012-04-29 12:45

      Tony that is a matter of perception. Maybe you are part of the heard that believe in BS conspiracies?

      Fred - 2012-04-29 18:22

      Interesting. :)

      Fidel - 2012-04-30 08:23

      So powerful people would never "conspire" would they, and the media would never lie. People lie and so do governments.

      AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-04-30 09:19

      Here is another conspiracy story for you; I have investigated 9/11 now for more than 6 years, and I finally got the proof which I had been looking for; That body that the USA threw into the ocean, was not that of Bib Laden, but of Julius Malema. I am 100 % sure of this !!! Dick Cheney got the hell in with JM, as his brother in law was going to built his Sandton mansion, but this slimy bastard double crossed him and in stead gave the building contract to Floyd Shivambu I have seen bank statements of JM , with my own eyes, the balance is R3.85 You see, EVERYBODY WAS LYING !!!!

  • theo.prinse - 2012-04-29 11:10

    The US administration (CIA) has no photo of Osama Bin Laden and he never was in the Abbottabad Villa and the Villa has disappeared too. Osama Bin Laden was not a muslim (mohammedan) either according to the anti-islam critique policy and the Critical Race Theory of the US administration. Leon Panetta (then CIA director) ultimately admitted that the webcam on the helmet of the Navy Seal was black during the alleged elimination of the alleged Bin Laden. The only true evidence of Bin Laden - his body - was said to be thrown in the ocean because the US administration had no Bin Laden on board to begin with. Perhaps the US administration or MI6 had his body already in a fridge somewhere around or before 2002. The Pakistan Parliament however denied officially that they knew that Bin Laden was in the villa and implicitly suggests to the Pakistani electorate in next year's election that Bin Laden WAS NOT in the Abbottabad villa either. Now ... Who will believe the alleged widows of Bin Laden if they were interviewed on their identity and who will believe a photo of Bin Laden as genuine if a US judge orders the US administration to produce such a photo ??

      Fred - 2012-04-29 18:02

      Bin Laden's body was DNA tested against DNA extracted from his sister, who died at a Massachusetts hospital last year. It was him to a 99.9% certainty level.

  • Lenzi - 2012-04-29 11:39

    Well they certainly gave the conspiracy theorists lots to chew on when they decided to dump his body in the middle of the ocean...and the media actually sells this stuff to the public.. haha and now his supposed neighbor denies he ever lived there because as the article mentions, he must be embarrassed..yes i'm sure.. what a joke... and oh yes lets not forget he supposedly hid 100 yards away from a Pakistani military base.. very very discreet thinking Obama err I mean Osama..

      Fred - 2012-04-29 18:07

      Bin Laden's body was DNA tested against DNA extracted from his sister, who died at a Massachusetts hospital last year. It was him to a 99.9% certainty level.

      Fidel - 2012-04-30 08:29

      The media (main stream) inevitably relies on the official version of the truth, seldom asking the government to prove its case, while demanding of critics of that official version the most exacting tests of evidence.

      Fred - 2012-05-01 04:31

      That's not the media's job in modern society, Fidel. It's the judiciary.

  • Nkosinathi - 2012-04-29 12:08

    Henry Kissinger, once said, "America does not have permanent friends or permanent enemies – but permanent interests.” United States gave hundred million dollars a year in aid to the Afghan Mujahideen insurgents fighting the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan and the Soviet Army in Operation Cyclone. Along with native Afghan mujahideen were Muslim volunteers from other countries, popularly known as Afghan Arabs with its leader Osama bin Laden, a wealthy and pious Saudi.9/11 conspiracy theories was widely accepted attacks were perpetrated solely by al-Qaeda under instructions of Osama, America killed what was once their best left hand man in their fight against the Soviet. United States supported and armed Saddam during the Iran–Iraq War in 1982. At the end it was America that killed Saddam. It was America that nuked Japan in 1945, but today America is a friend of Japan with its 45 000 arm deployed in Okinawa. I sometime fear one day America can arm Malema.

      goyougoodthing - 2012-04-29 12:41

      Well said, it's a pity that the sheeple won't and don't believe you.

      miandra.vanzyl - 2012-04-29 13:38

      America is the moral pimps of the world, they are only interested in a country if they can gain from it..like oil

      Dawood - 2012-04-29 14:09

      Its only about interests(mostly that of big business).America nuked Hiroshima and Nagasaki after the peace treaty was signed. It is American policy to create a war every 7 years cos war is big big business and amongst the 10 biggest employers.Most politicians have interests in the defence industry.And the rest receive huge money to be pro war. Doesnt matter whether they're Democrat or Republican.The world is duped by these true terrorists.

      Dylan Dario Sciarappa - 2012-04-29 17:15

      Careful nkosinathi. Some slow people on this site may call you crazy!!!! And you are right... The USA has always had a policy of regime change in any country which does not serve the national interests of the us govt and the big business and banking system which clearly run the president and the world as a whole.

      AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-04-29 17:25

      Miandra, ""China is the moral pimps of the world, they are only interested in a country if they can gain from it..like oil"" Iran, Venzuela, Libya, Sudan.................just a few !!!

      AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-04-29 17:37

      Nkosinathi, No, with Dylan, you don't have to be careful at all..... It is totally unnessarily to come with soo much detail, just say "f..k America, and you wil get your thumbs up, from him !!

      Fred - 2012-04-29 17:58

      Bin Laden's body was DNA tested against DNA extracted from his sister, who died at a Massachusetts hospital last year. It was him to a 99.9% certainty level.

      Fred - 2012-04-29 18:12

      Nkosinathi, that's a slanted and incomplete account.

      Fred - 2012-04-29 18:16

      Goodrhing, as pointed out previously, you believe the US attacked itself on 9/11, the CIA not the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan in the 1980's, the Rothschilds of all people are the source of evil in our world, and central banks are arms of private banks not governments. It's not a long stretch from these VERY faulty beliefs to believe Bin Laden didn't exist, or didn't carry out 9/11 or what have you.

      Fred - 2012-04-29 18:17

      Miandra, what an absurd and ignorant thought.

      Fred - 2012-04-29 18:19

      Dawood, the US "nuked" Hiroshima and Nagasaki after "the peace treaty was signed"? You're rewriting history again. :)

      Fred - 2012-04-29 18:20

      Dylan, again, that's a very simple and faulty view of the world.

      Fidel - 2012-04-30 08:36

      @Anthony Re China.. China is perfectly honest in its benign indifference to the social and political arrangements of the countries it does business with. American foreign and military policy has been built entirely on lies - mostly about liberty and democracy.

      allcoveredinNinjas - 2012-04-30 09:24

      @Fidel - thats because China has those little problem area's of Tibet and Taiwan . They could hardly make statements without it it being a direct hypocracy .

      AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-04-30 10:49

      @Fidel, Sure, China is very straightforward with their "investments" AS a matter of fact, totally blunt ! "we will purchase your oil and other minerals, but only on OUR terms. No negotiations...take it or leave it !!! And one of their main conditions; We don't want Africans to work for us, we will bring our own people > ( They will never again leave Africa, But that is not our problem.!!!! That is the difference between investments from the West and that what China calls "investments" American and European companies employ mainly locals. Libya and South Sudan, just being two examples.... At the time the Libyan uprising started, 30000 Chinese in Libya !!!!!! Check out , how many Chinese have entered just South Sudan and Zambia China obviously has a problem with Africans, maybe they think they are stupid, or dumb, or lazy....!!! And the few that do get a job at a Chinese company, ask them about their working conditions, and compare those with the ones who work for American and European companies !!!!!!!!

      Fidel - 2012-05-01 03:57

      Where are all these European or American companies you keep referring to, in SA, as surely there's no major western companies in the rest of Africa. The Chinese have built industry locally, the westerners cart all the raw materials away.

      AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-05-01 04:25

      Fidel, ""Where are all these European or American companies you keep referring to"" Check out; The Automobile Industry; ( General Motors, Ford, etc ) The Computer Industry; ( Microsoft, Oracle, etc ) The Petro Chemical Industry; ( Shell, Caltex, etc ) The Cooldrink Industry; ( Coca Cola, Pepsi, etc, Employing thousands of locals in (almost) every country in Africa !! )

  • Mpendulo Mathebula - 2012-04-29 12:09

    everybody knows that the americans like showing off, as well as history clearly assures us that if Bin Laden was dead, the Americans would make sure that we see his face.

      Fred - 2012-04-29 17:57

      Everyone, meaning you. Bin Laden's body was DNA tested against DNA extracted from his sister, who died at a Massachusetts hospital last year. It was him to a 99.9% certainty level.

  • Bobby - 2012-04-29 12:23

    I saw him last week, he was having a milkshake at the Wimpy in Beaufort West with Elvis. Elvis called him Ozzy.

      Dawood - 2012-04-29 14:12

      L O L

      sfisosan - 2012-04-29 17:18

      Elvis? Ozzy? Suddenly I'm reminded of the book I read not too long ago (Odd Thomas). Oh well..

  • Tony Lapson - 2012-04-29 12:27

    If bin laden is alive, all he would have to do is expose himself and embarrass America. That would confirm every conspiracy theory and America would rip itself apart.

      Fred - 2012-04-29 17:57

      Exactly. Like any president would take the chance of being shown-up like that. This is a key reason why all these theories are silly.

  • Rerrits - 2012-04-29 12:43

    Who's Bin Laden? Is he a friend of Bryce Lawrence? Same initials.....

  • phosa.peter2 - 2012-04-29 12:51

    I too dont believ Bin laden is history, since usa go for pride,they should have done what they did at irag(show the footage)..pronouncing his dead vividly to the world without concrete evidence..only the idiots can believ

      Fred - 2012-04-29 17:55

      Bin Laden's body was DNA tested against DNA extracted from his sister, who died at a Massachusetts hospital last year. It was him to a 99.9% certainty level.

  • Raul - 2012-04-29 12:59

    At least there was evidence that he went for a swim. They found one of his sandals floating in the ocean. He probably drowned or was caught by a shark.

  • Nelson - 2012-04-29 13:09

    Bin laden is alive

      Piet - 2012-04-29 13:51

      So is JAN van Riebeek

  • Fred - 2012-04-29 16:13

    Bin Laden's body was DNA tested against DNA extracted from his sister, who died at a Massachusetts hospital last year. It was him to a 99.9% certainty level.

      Ari - 2012-04-29 17:13

      Bin Laden died of kidney failure in 2001. Even the British Daily Mail holds this view http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1212851/Has-Osama-Bin-Laden-dead-seven-years--U-S-Britain-covering-continue-war-terror.html

      Fred - 2012-04-29 17:54

      The page doesn't exist. Plus there's any number of stories about what really happened from credible sources like NatGeo, the Discovery Channel, PBS, the BBC, the Smithsonian.

      Fred - 2012-04-29 19:15

      Opened it now. The Daily Mail is a tabloid.

  • bashin.monyela - 2012-04-29 17:56

    The illuminati did it

      Fred - 2012-04-29 18:25

      The Illuminati that lives in a hole under the Vatican? :)

      bashin.monyela - 2012-04-29 18:32

      No they bigger than that, they own the vatican and every single goverment is at their mercy.

      Fred - 2012-04-29 19:12

      It's like the conspiracy theory, Bashin: fun to think about, imagine in books and movies but not to believe and live. It doesn't exist.

      bashin.monyela - 2012-04-29 19:15

      And what proof do u have that it doesn't exist?

      Fred - 2012-04-29 19:32

      What proof do you have that it does? :)

      bashin.monyela - 2012-04-29 20:33

      The list endless, i don't have the energy to type it all down, do your own research, but answer my question.

      Fred - 2012-04-29 20:40

      There's no proof, and you know it. Just conjecture.

  • Christopher - 2012-04-29 20:16

    Bin Ladin is dead get over it u bunch of communists!!!! HAHAHAHAHAHAHA USA USA USA mess with us we will flatten U!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! THE USA RULES!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Fred - 2012-04-29 20:42

    Taken from Bin Laden's compound on the night of the raid: 5 computers 10 hard drives 100 storage devices (essentially hard-drives) CD's, DVD's & Flash-drives It's pretty much over. There's enough information there to end Al-Quaida's operations.

  • olerilwe.mosiane - 2012-04-30 06:11

    i don't think america killed bin laden like they want us to believe.yes they captured him in pakistan,but because al-aqaeda is a menace in their backside,they're torturing him to da highest degree to get answers from him.to me osama bin laden is a missing in action that only pentagon knows about.osama bin laden is alive and kicking in the captivity of USA AND HE IS TOP SECRET

      Fred - 2012-04-30 06:40

      Taken from Bin Laden's compound on the night of the raid: 5 computers 10 hard drives 100 storage devices (essentially hard-drives) CD's, DVD's & Flash-drives No need to torture.

      olerilwe.mosiane - 2012-04-30 08:12

      @fred if america had killed bin laden,his photo's could be everywhere by now.don't you think throwing him in da sea doesn't make any sense.remember saddam and gaddafi were al over the news,why not bin laden?something is fishy here

      Fred - 2012-04-30 08:42

      They learnt from those events, I think. They were gross and reduced the standing of the US in the world. I recommend looking out for the programs on NatGeo, Frontline and the Discovery Channel on the mission. Amazing. There's zero doubt in my mind the mission happened and Bin Laden is dead.

  • olerilwe.mosiane - 2012-04-30 06:11

    i don't think america killed bin laden like they want us to believe.yes they captured him in pakistan,but because al-aqaeda is a menace in their backside,they're torturing him to da highest degree to get answers from him.to me osama bin laden is a missing in action that only pentagon knows about.osama bin laden is alive and kicking in the captivity of USA AND HE IS TOP SECRET

  • Tlou - 2012-04-30 07:17

    good question...

  • Preshen - 2012-04-30 09:52

    Bin Laden was staying with 4 wives in the same house I think he called the Navy Seal

      Fred - 2012-05-02 21:32

      24 of them actually, with four helicopters, to get him out of there. :) :)

  • Richard - 2012-05-01 08:51

    I could only read about half the posts before my stomach gave in, but AnthonyfromAfrica wins thus far with the most innovative conspiracy theory - if only amusing nonsense. But what is needed is a really well researched treatise on this matter with the best credible authoratitive references and logic. But there is one thing for sure and that's neither the US nor Pakistani governments really want the truth and full transparency to be in the public domain. Keeping the masses ignorant has a substantial strategic value and it shows in these blogs.

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