President Barack Obama — at the urging of senior adviser Valerie Jarrett — canceled the operation to kill Osama bin Laden three times before finally approving the May 2, 2011, Navy SEAL mission, according to a book scheduled to be released next month.
In “Leading From Behind: The Reluctant President and the Advisors who Decide for Him,” Richard Miniter writes that Obama canceled the mission in January 2011, again in February, and a third time in March, The Daily Caller reports
The book is to be released Aug. 21.
Jarrett, Miniter says in the book, persuaded the president to postpone the mission each time, The Daily Caller reports. She is a senior advisor and assistant to the president for Public Engagement and Intergovernmental Affairs.
Miniter, a two-time New York Times best-selling author, based his reporting on an unnamed source with Joint Special Operations Command who had direct knowledge of the operation and its planning, The Daily Caller reports.
Obama administration officials said after the raid that the president had delayed giving the order to kill bin Laden the day before the order was carried out — an apparent fourth moment of indecision.
The White House blamed the delay at the time on poor weather conditions near the bin Laden compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan. But Miniter says that he had obtained that day’s weather reports from the U.S. Air Force Combat Meteorological Center — and that they showed ideal conditions for the SEALs to carry out their orders, The Daily Caller reports.
“President Obama’s greatest success was actually his greatest failure,” Miniter told The Daily Caller. “Leading From Behind,” he said, examines six important decisions of the Obama White House, showing how the president did — or, in many cases, did not — make them.
Obama, in making the assassination of Osama bin Laden a focal point in his re-election campaign, has called the mission one of the “gutsiest calls of any president in recent history.”
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