Tags: Leon Panetta | Osama bin Laden | Raid | Anniversary

Leon Panetta: Osama bin Laden Raid Was Conducted 'Flawlessly'

Image: Leon Panetta: Osama bin Laden Raid Was Conducted 'Flawlessly'
Former CIA director Leon Panetta. (Getty Images)

By    |   Monday, 02 May 2016 01:33 PM

Osama bin Laden was discovered hiding in plain sight in a suburban compound with his wives, kids and cable TV service — 180 degrees opposite of what the agency believed for years as it hunted for the 9/11 terror chief, former CIA director Leon Panetta says.

"Believing that Bin Laden was in that suburban villa required us to shed our most basic assumptions about how he would operate," Panetta said in the Harvard Business Review, in an article written with his former chief of staff Jeremy Bash for the fifth anniversary of bin Laden's death.

"We assumed he would deem it unsafe to live with other families, whose children left the compound every day to go to school. We assumed he would not want to live near a military compound where helicopters flew overhead most days.

"We assumed he would have set up layers of defenses around a booby-trapped lair, posting sentries and guards, and perhaps digging escape tunnels or otherwise having an intricate escape plan."

But that was not the case and the agency then worked up a foolproof plan for an elite Navy SEAL team to take out the mass-murdering maniac at his compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan

"The strength of the team hunting Bin Laden was that they were willing to challenge the prevailing hypothesis. They were willing to admit that the Agency had been wrong," Panetta writes.

"And they were willing to dedicate finite resources to an entirely new theory, one that upended all previous assumptions, and to imagine that Bin Laden's plan to 'hide in plain sight' was more brilliant than we had ever guessed he'd be ... The team conducted the raid flawlessly."

Panetta's article was published two days after the agency "live-tweeted" the raid that led to bin Laden's death on Saturday to commemorate the fifth anniversary.

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Osama bin Laden was discovered hiding in plain sight in a suburban compound with his wives, kids and cable TV service - 180 degrees opposite of what the agency believed for years as it hunted for the 9/11 terror chief, former CIA director Leon Panetta says.
Leon Panetta, Osama bin Laden, Raid, Anniversary
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2016-33-02
Monday, 02 May 2016 01:33 PM
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