2011年5月4日水曜日

Obama Bin Ladin Dead

ウサマ・ビンラディン容疑者を殺害し、水葬したようだ。
 オバマ米大統領は、ホワイトハウスで演説し、米同時多発テロを首謀
したとされるオサマ・ビンラディン容疑者を米軍などがパキスタン国内で
殺害し、遺体を確保したと発表した。同容疑者の遺体はすでに水葬された。

経済と外交が弱いと言われたオバマだが、再立候補を表明したばかりの
大統領選に、ビンラディン急襲でかなりの追い風となる。

ウサマ死亡の検証番組が世界的に始まる。
ジェロニモ作戦として、ビンラディンを急襲をしたSEAL TEAM 6。
隊員の赤外線カメラを衛星回線を通して、殺害を確認したようだが、
赤外線カメラの映像から顔認証できるかは不明。
DNAも当初から仕込まれていれば、確証にはならない。
戦利品を求める多くの米兵士がウサマ本人の戦利品を獲得しないのも
おかしい。
そもそも、米国外のパキスタンで、米軍によるテロ容疑者(?)の急襲は、
パキスタン政府の許可が無ければ、できない。
パ政府は、国内で諜報活動したとされる米外交官を逮捕したり、米UAVに
よる市民無差別攻撃で、反米状態。急襲の許可がでるとは、考えにくい。
米政府は内通していると言う理由でパ政府に事後報告のようだ。
ISIと米CIAとの共同作業との説も有るが、詳細は不明。
ネットに流れている死亡写真は偽造と報道がある。
検証はこれからだが、別人または存在しない人を殺した可能性もある。
イスラム原理主義テロリストとの戦いと言うが、イスラム原理主義者の
中には、キリスト教との戦いと言うものもいる。
報復テロが発表され、世界的に警告が報道される。

ブッシュがイラク戦争開戦の際、大量破壊兵器保有を主要理由としたが
後に、CIAの情報が間違っており、大量破壊兵器は無かったと言い直した。
同様に、オバマもビンラディン急襲は無かったと言いそうだ。
オバマも政治的に死亡か。

戦利品の軍法会議
UAV 民間人犠牲急増
パキスタン 米外交官を裁判へ


頭に銃撃の痕 写真公開/ビンラディン容疑者殺害.flv


ビンラディン容疑者殺害の町から記者中継


Obama Adresses Osama Bin Laden's Death - Full Statement


Osama Bin Laden Dies President Obama And Hillary Clinton Watch Operation That Killed Al Qaeda Chief


Bin Laden Killing President Obama UrgesUnity Similar To That Following September 11 Attacks


Impact of Bin Laden's death on Afghanistan Al Jazeera


US Warns Travelers After Bin Laden's Death The Associated Press


---ビンラディン容疑者殺害 アメリカ軍による殺害作戦の詳細などが明らかに---
2011/05/03 16:54
http://www.fnn-news.com/news/headlines/articles/CONN00198676.html

ウサマ・ビンラディン容疑者が潜伏していた邸宅内部の様子や、アメリカ軍による殺害作戦の詳細が明らかになってきた。
険しい表情で1点を見つめるオバマ大統領に、口元を手で覆うクリントン国務長官。
ホワイトハウスの幹部たちが、ウサマ・ビンラディン容疑者殺害作戦の様子を見守る写真が公開された。
作戦の成功がわかった時には、安堵(あんど)のため息が漏れたという。
オバマ大統領は、普段は敵対する野党の議員からも称賛された。
オバマ大統領が2日、「アメリカ市民の皆さん、ご存じの通り、アメリカの作戦遂行により、ウサマ・ビンラディンの殺害という結果を出すことができました」と述べると、大きな拍手がわき起こった。
一方、ビンラディン容疑者が潜伏していた隠れ家と、殺害作戦の詳細が明らかになった。
パキスタンの首都イスラマバードからほど近い町、アボタバード。
そこに、周囲の建物のおよそ8倍もの広さがある、ほぼ三角形の敷地がある。
ビンラディン容疑者は、高さ3~5.4メートルの塀に囲まれた豪邸に、家族と潜伏していた。
庭には、子どものおもちゃがあり、猫の姿も見られた。
塀の上に張りめぐらされた有刺鉄線。
建物には8つの部屋があり、1階の部屋には、母親のベッドと子ども用ベッド。その前に血痕があった。
2階のビンラディン容疑者の寝室とみられる部屋には、クイーンサイズのベッドがあり、大量の血痕が残されていた。
クローゼットには、子ども用の服があり、棚には薬も並べられていた。
アメリカの大統領補佐官は「わたしの見解では、女性が人間の盾だった。ビンラディンを殺害できるチャンスの時、女性が盾として使われる場所にいた」と述べた。
一方、パキスタン・クエッタでは2日、ビンラディン容疑者の殺害に抗議する集会が行われた。
集会参加者は「世界に、こう言いたい。ビンラディンの殉教によって、聖戦が終わったわけではない。どのメンバーも、ビンラディンみたいになる。そして、アメリカと異教徒の世界の脅威となるだろう」と話した。
「パキスタンのタリバン運動」は、報復テロを宣言した。
今回の作戦には、アメリカ海軍最強といわれる特殊部隊「SEALs(シールズ)」と、さらにはCIA(中央情報局)の要員も加わって、20~25人程度の部隊によって行われたという。
人数が絞り込まれているのは、機密保持と短時間で作戦を遂行するという目的があったもよう。
さらに、ビンラディン容疑者が潜伏する建物を、まずはヘリで急襲。
アメリカ軍によると、そのうちの1機は計器が故障し、着陸に失敗したもようで、機密保持のために、その場で爆破された。
作戦自体は、40分間で遂行された。
ビンラディン容疑者の遺体は、アボタバードから国境を越えて、アフガニスタンのジャララバードのアメリカ軍基地に運ばれ、ここでDNA鑑定などが行われた。
さらに、アラビア海に停泊していた空母「カールビンソン」に運ばれ、水葬されたという。
水葬にあたっては、アメリカ軍のイスラム教の兵士が、ある程度の儀式を執り行ったとみられる。


---ビンラディン容疑者「生け捕り」の可能性、ほとんどなかった=米政府---
2011年 05月 3日 15:55 JST
http://jp.reuters.com/article/worldNews/idJPJAPAN-20923220110503

[ワシントン 2日 ロイター] ブレナン米大統領補佐官(テロ対策担当)は2日の記者会見で、ウサマ・ビンラディン容疑者の殺害について、同容疑者が抵抗しなければ生かしたまま捕らえることは可能だったとしながらも、その可能性はほとんどなかったと述べた。
 同補佐官は、「ビンラディン容疑者が抵抗することが懸念されていたが、実際に彼は抵抗した。銃撃戦となり、(同容疑者は)殺害された」と経緯を説明した。
 事情に詳しい複数の政府当局者によると、作戦は米海軍特殊部隊のメンバーを中心とした約15人の部隊によって遂行されたという。また別の政府当局者の話では、40分に及ぶ戦闘で部隊はビンラディン容疑者の胸と頭を銃撃し殺害。同容疑者は応戦しなかったという。
 またある当局者によると、この作戦により、ビンラディン容疑者のほかに男性3人、女性1人が死亡。当初、死亡した女性は同容疑者の妻の一人で、同容疑者の「人間の盾」になったとされていたが、この妻はけがを負ったが生存しており、また死亡した女性が「人間の盾」にされたことも訂正されたという。


---ビンラディン容疑者を殺害 米大統領「最大の成果」---
2011年5月2日22時45分
http://www.asahi.com/international/update/0502/TKY201105020162.html

 オバマ米大統領は1日夜(日本時間2日)、ホワイトハウスで演説し、2001年の米同時多発テロを首謀したとされる国際テロ組織アルカイダの指導者オサマ・ビンラディン容疑者を米軍などがパキスタン国内で殺害し、遺体を確保したと発表した。同容疑者の死亡によって、約10年に及ぶ米国のテロとの戦いは大きな節目を迎えた。
 オバマ大統領は演説の冒頭で、ビンラディン容疑者が「数千人の無実の男女や子どもを殺害した責任を負う」とし、「米国の作戦によって死亡したと、米国民と世界に報告する」と語った。ビンラディン容疑者を拘束または殺害することが就任以来の最優先課題だったとし、「アルカイダ打倒の戦いの中で、最も大きな成果」と強調した。
 米政府高官によると、米中央情報局(CIA)が昨夏、ビンラディン容疑者がパキスタンに潜伏しているとの情報を入手。その後、同国北部アボタバードの潜伏先を特定した。オバマ大統領は4月29日、身柄を確保するための作戦を許可した。
 作戦は現地時間の2日未明に実施され、小規模の実行部隊がヘリコプターを使って潜伏先を襲撃。ビンラディン容疑者は銃撃戦の末に死亡し、遺体は米側が確保した。この際、同容疑者の側近2人や息子らも死亡した。
 米メディアによると、実行部隊は米海軍特殊部隊(SEALS)とCIAの軍事部門。ビンラディン容疑者は襲撃に抵抗し、頭部に銃弾を受けた。米当局は身元の確認のため、遺体のDNA型鑑定を実施しているという。
 一方、AP通信などによると、同容疑者の遺体はすでに水葬された。イスラム教の慣習で死後すみやかに埋葬すべきだとされることや、遺体の受け入れ国を探すのが困難なことが理由という。また、イスラム教の慣習に従って土葬すると、同容疑者の支持者らがその場所を「聖地」とみなしたり、遺体を奪還しようと攻撃を仕掛けたりする可能性も懸念したとみられる。
 米政府高官は、ビンラディン容疑者の死亡について「アルカイダや関連武装勢力に壊滅的な打撃となる」と指摘。一方、指導者を失ったアルカイダ側が「米国を攻撃する努力を加速させかねない」とし、米政府が世界各地の大使館に「報復テロ」への警戒を呼びかけたことを明らかにした。
 オバマ大統領も「我々は国内外で警戒心を保たねばならない」と述べたが、イスラム世界への配慮から「米国はイスラム世界と戦争しているわけではない」とも強調した。
 オバマ政権は今年7月、アフガンに駐留する米軍約10万人の部分撤退を始める。アルカイダとの戦いで「最も偉大な勝利」(米政府高官)を受けて、約10年に及ぶ泥沼の戦いからの出口がようやく見え始めたとも言える。
 ビンラディン容疑者は、1957年、サウジアラビアで建設業で財をなした富豪を父に生まれた。旧ソ連がアフガンに侵攻した79年以降にイスラム・ゲリラに参加。91年の湾岸戦争でサウジが米軍駐留を認めたことへの反発から反米闘争を始めた。(ワシントン=望月洋嗣)


---Report of bin Laden’s death spurs questions from conspiracy theorists---
By Emily Wax, Tuesday, May 3, 9:23 AM
http://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/report-of-bin-ladens-death-spurs-questions-from-conspiracy-theorists/2011/05/02/AF90ZjbF_story.html

While much of America celebrated the dramatic killing of Osama bin Laden, the Sept. 11 conspiracy theorists still had questions. For them and a growing number of skeptics, the plot only thickened.

Could the public trust bin Laden’s DNA samples? Where was bin Laden’s body? Why was the most wanted mujaheddin on Earth buried in an undisclosed location in the northern Arabian Sea? Why was the news announced mere weeks after President Obama’s campaign kickoff and just days after his birth certificate was released? Why so late on a Sunday night?

Within minutes of the news of bin Laden’s funeral at sea, Facebook, Twitter and e-mail lighted up with conspiracy theories from around the globe, asking questions, pointing out discrepancies, motives, counter-motives, coverups and counter-coverups, comparing photos and videos, voice recordings and FBI most-wanted pinup posters.

“This has not put a single of the 9/11 questions to bed,” said Steven Jones, a retired Brigham Young University physics professor and contributor to the 9/11 Truth Movement. Jones, along with other members of the movement, a loose coalition of people who distrust Washington’s version of the attacks, say the collapse of the twin towers is best explained as controlled demolition.

“As a scientist, I try to look at the evidence I can get,” Jones said.

It started with the “9/11 truthers,” who, after the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, wondered why 110-story towers crashed and military jets failed to intercept even one airliner. They formed organizations. They held rallies. They filed many Freedom of Information Act requests.

They wrote books and studied the physics of the towers crumbling.

“I don’t know how you can have closure, when there are hundreds of contradictions to the stories that you were told. The story doesn’t end here because we are told bin Laden is dead,” said Mike Berger, who works with 911Truth.org, an organization founded to examine facts around the attack. “We are living in an endless war of trillions of dollars being spent without any responsibility.’’

Alex Jones, a radio personality out of Austin, who gives voice to the 9/11 Truth Movement and runs the Web site Infowars.com, sent out a Web headline that screamed, “Red Alert. Inside Sources: Bin Laden Corpse Has Been on Ice for Nearly a Decade.”

The “king of conspiracy,” as he is known by the media, pointed out discrepancies that went instantly viral. He lists FBI officials and counterintelligence leaders from Iran, Pakistan and Afghanistan who have said for years that bin Laden was dead. Former Council on Foreign Relations member Steve R. Pieczenik even told Jones on the air in 2002 that bin Laden had been dead for months.

“Obama just relaunched his election bid, and nabbing bin Laden is the main kickoff campaign rally. Things aren’t going well. So they are bringing back an old staple. They need a hero. It’s the Orwellian archtypical bearded scary bad guy who is going to get us, so don’t worry, the government got the bad guy,’’ said Jones in a telephone interview after his syndicated self-titled afternoon radio show. “This isn’t Elvis, man. The government lied to us about WMDs.”

But Elvis didn’t die during the Facebook era, when Web pages such as “Osama bin Laden NOT DEAD” go up instantly. “There’s something fishy in the waters where they supposedly dropped him. A picture of him dead wouldn’t have hurt,” reads an entry by one contributor.

“They saved Che Guevara’s fingertips to prove it was him,” said Ted Goertzel, a professor of psychology at Rutgers University at Camden, N.J., who has written extensively on psychology and terrorism. “But Muslim tradition says you bury the body right away. The issue is, our society goes through a traumatic event of 9/11, and this comes 10 years later, so it’s not timed very well for our national mourning or anger. But the conspiracy reaction is a way of thinking that’s much more common today, and people are accustomed to it because of the Internet. There’s no screening process. People may also be going into an automatic response.”

At different moments in American history, such as after the deaths of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and President John F. Kennedy, the country becomes more prone to conspiracy theories because there’s so much hurt and anger, Goertzel said.

Cindy Sheehan, the mother of a soldier killed in Iraq, who became a symbol of the opposition to the war, went on her Facebook page today to broadcast her theory.

“I am sorry, but if you believe the newest death of OBL, you’re stupid,” Sheehan writes. “Just think to yourself - they paraded Saddam’s dead sons around to prove they were dead - why do you suppose they hastily buried this version of OBL at sea? This lying, murderous Empire can only exist with your brainwashed consent - just put your flags away and THINK!”

---How the U.S. found and finished Bin Laden---
By David Ignatius, Tuesday, May 3, 1:58 AM
http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/how_the_us_found_and_finished_bin_laden/2011/05/02/AFXO8jZF_story.html?wprss=rss_homepage

The assault on Osama bin Laden - as quick and ruthless an operation as you would see in any spy movie - shows that the CIA and the military’s super-secret Joint Special Operations Command have combined to create what amounts to a highly effective killing machine.

The shorthand for these operations is “find, fix, finish.” The CIA and other intelligence agencies typically provide the first two, and the bin Laden attack shows that this process can take years of patient detective work. JSOC warriors then come in for the finish.

A reconstruction of how this operation was put together shows how the pieces of America’s counterterrorism policy fit together. It also illuminates one of the CIA’s biggest puzzles, which is whether it can work effectively with Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence directorate. The answer seems to be “sometimes.”

The trail that led to bin Laden’s hideout in the town of Abbottabad, about 75 miles north of Islamabad, began between 2002 and 2004 with the CIA’s interrogation of al-Qaeda “high-value targets” at secret CIA sites overseas. Several detainees mentioned the “nom de guerre,” or nickname, of one of bin Laden’s couriers.

Some of the detainees who confirmed the courier’s nickname were subjected to “enhanced interrogation techniques,” the CIA’s formal name for what is now widely viewed as torture. This adds a moral ambiguity to a story that is otherwise one of triumphal retribution and justice.

The CIA spent years trying to figure out the courier’s identity. Using sources that U.S. officials won’t discuss, the agency finally discovered the courier’s real name in 2007, along with the important fact that he had a brother. In early 2009, a team from the agency’s counterterrorism center traced him to a compound in Abbottabad that he shared with the brother.

Pakistan was told little about the bin Laden manhunt, for fear that the information would leak. But a U.S. official said the Pakistanis offered some help. “They provided information that helped us identify where one of the brothers might be located,” this official said. He added: “They didn’t tell us he was in Abbottabad, but their information allowed us to track him there.”

Now the agency had a suspect location but no firm idea bin Laden was there. Surveillance confirmed that this was an unusual compound. The surrounding walls were up to 18 feet high, and even the balconies had seven-foot walls. And the compound maintained unusual security: It had no telephone or Internet service, and trash was regularly burned.

As the CIA continued its surveillance, analysts concluded that another family was secretly living in the compound, along with the two brothers. The number of family members and other details matched bin Laden’s likely family group. This crucial “circumstantial” evidence was briefed to President Obama last August, says a U.S. official.

This year, JSOC began preparing the “finish” operation, using members of Seal Team 6, its most elite counterterrorism unit. Obama was given a choice between bombing the compound or staging the raid. Obama opted for the latter, believing the United States needed to capture bin Laden’s body.

One of the mysteries is whether the Pakistani government knew all along who was hiding in Abbottabad. It is hardly remote territory: A Pakistani military college is two miles away. A senior U.S. official says the CIA has carefully examined this question but has “zero evidence” of Pakistani government knowledge of bin Laden’s location. That’s not quite the same as saying for certain that the Pakistanis didn’t know, and it allows the ISI and CIA to continue working as sometime partners.

CIA Director Leon Panetta, who directed the operation, told Pakistan nothing until the helicopters had left Abbottabad to return to Afghanistan. But U.S. officials describe the subsequent Pakistani reaction as helpful. Pakistani officials urged Obama to make his unusual late-night announcement so the Pakistani public would immediately know the U.S. had attacked bin Laden, not a Pakistani target. And Islamabad promised to try to mitigate Pakistani popular anger, which officials did by issuing a supportive statement Monday.

Does bin Laden’s demise mean the death of al-Qaeda? CIA analysts won’t go that far. But they have concluded that the operation “will accelerate its demise,” and that the battered organization is now at a “tipping point” that could lead to collapse.

The hidden trophy of Sunday’s raid: The JSOC team captured intelligence materials from the compound that might reveal the location of Ayman al-Zawahiri, the organization’s new commander. “That’s where we’re going next,” says one U.S. official involved in planning the operation.


---USS Carl Vinson: Osama Bin Laden's Burial at Sea---
By KI MAE HEUSSNER
May 2, 2011
http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/uss-carl-vinson-osama-bin-ladens-burial-sea/story?id=13510831

Before Osama bin Laden's body was lowered to its final resting place at sea, the last spot on earth to host his remains was reportedly the deck of the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson.

When asked about the USS Carl Vinson's role in burying bin Laden, a military official would not confirm the ship's involvement. But Pentagon officials previously told ABC News and other news outlets that the 30-year-old naval vessel was indeed the ship responsible for transporting bin Laden's body to its burial, likely in the Indian Ocean.

In Islam, people are typically buried in the ground, without a casket, before the next of five daily prayer periods have taken place. The U.S. government apparently decided it was risky for bin Laden to have a known grave, lest it become a shrine to the world's best-known terrorist.

Officials said that, in accordance with Muslim law, bin Laden's burial at sea was conducted by a Muslim seaman, who recited the prayers and ensured that the body was washed and wrapped appropriately in cloth.

But this task was hardly the Vinson's only high-profile assignment. In the three decades since its launch in 1980, the ship has earned the nickname "America's favorite aircraft carrier." It has assisted with key military and humanitarian operations around the world.

The aircraft carrier, named for Democratic Rep. Carl Vinson of Georgia (1883-1981), was first commissioned on March 13, 1982. Vinson served more than 50 years in the House, and during World War II he became known as "the father of the two-ocean navy."

USS Carl Vinson's Motto: 'Strength from the Sea'

After several sea trials, the ship took off from Norfolk, Va., in 1983, for an eight-month world cruise, with a crew of nearly 6,000 sailors, the ship's website says.

In the decades since its inaugural cruise, the ship has continued to tour the world to support key military campaigns. In the 1990s, it launched air strikes in support of Operation Desert Fox and Operation Southern Watch in Iraq. After the September 11 attacks, the USS Carl Vinson moved to the North Arabian Sea, to launch the first strikes for Operation Enduring Freedom.

In January 2010, the aircraft carrier was sent to Port-au-Prince, Haiti, to assist disaster relief operations after the devastating earthquake.

The ship also goes by the nickname the "Gold Eagle" -- so called for the eagle prominently featured in its seal. The eagle, which is meant to be emblematic of the country, carries a banner displaying the Latin phrase, "Vis Per Mare," which means "Strength from the Sea" and is the ship's motto.

The USS Carl Vinson's Facebook page has nearly 28,000 "likes" but includes the warning "Loose Lips Sink Ships!"

"ANY discussion or speculation of the ship's location or anticipated inport dates before they're officially released may result in revocation of access to this page," the page's description says. "Remember, the bad guys DO follow our Facebook page too."


---Osama bin Laden is dead - but not al-Qaida or its cause---
Simon Jenkins
guardian.co.uk, Monday 2 May 2011 20.44 BST
http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/may/02/bin-laden-war-terrorism-afghanistan-us

Ten years of 'war on terror' have devastated Afghanistan. All its people want is peace. Will they get it at last?


We shed no tears for Osama bin Laden. The most outrageous act of terrorism in modern times has led to the most gigantic manhunt and most costly tit-for-tat war. America's joy, as much of relief as of delight, is understandable. But the thesis must now be put to the test, whether an idea is more potent when its creator has died for it than when he was alive. Killing Bin Laden removes Bin Laden, but not al-Qaida or its cause. It will not end his franchise on jihadism. We must assume a furious bout of retaliation from those prepared to die in his name.

The challenge now is not for the Muslim world but for the west. Can the clock be stopped on the "wars of 9/11"? Can time be called on this rerun of the medieval crusades, America's (and Britain's) massive retaliation? Can the craving for revenge that fuelled the US's astonishing 10 years of war against weak but curiously potent foes at last abate?

I recall the Afghan diplomat who told me in the weeks between 9/11 and the assault on Kabul of October 2001 that, provided the west did not go to war against Afghanistan, "Bin Laden is dead". A Pashtun loya jirga in Kandahar that September had come near to demanding that Mullah Omar expel Bin Laden and his Arabs. The view of observers was that opinion was moving against Omar's indulgence of them.

Above all, al-Qaida's murder of the Tajik hero Ahmad Shah Massoud two days before 9/11, meant that every loyal Tajik wanted Bin Laden's blood. He and his hated Arabs had become "unwelcome guests" in Afghanistan, and had now undermined a mild Taliban rapprochement with its old friends in Washington's CIA. Leave Kabul alone, my informant said, raise the blood money and Bin Laden's days were numbered. Above all, make sure the Taliban are not driven into the arms of al-Qaida, or Bin Laden the reckless menace will become Bin Laden the saint.

This advice was widely disseminated, but gained no hearing. The hysteria of revenge was overwhelming and the drums of war deafening. Who knows how many tens of thousands of Afghans died, and are still dying, to avenge Bin Laden? There can be no computation of the billions of dollars blown on the project, nearly bankrupting the US government. The Taliban were duly punished and the west trapped in ill-conceived "nation-building" in Afghanistan. American and British governments were so besotted by terrorism that they persuaded themselves of a new and fanciful threat from a wholly unrelated Muslim state, Iraq. Yet more thousands of Muslims died and billions were spent in the process.

The west thus entered the 21st century massively ignoring Eisenhower's warning of what happens when too much power is vested in the military-industrial complex. Soldiers demanded "surges" and politicians capitulated. The continued drone bombing of Pakistani villages - starkly counter-productive, say the WikiLeaks revelations - shows there is nothing more lethal to peace than a general out of control with a new piece of kit.

To what end? A few nasty guys have gone, in a world awash with them, and the west has lost its peace dividend. Britain, the US and western values in general have not emerged from a decade of conflict with their reputations enhanced, quite the reverse. A new centre of regional instability has been created in Pakistan, where it is clear that the military was sheltering Bin Laden. There is no "conquest" of the Taliban to be had, as there never has been in history. There is only a deal between the tribes and warlords of this troubled land, under the aegis of the neighbouring Pakistani state. It is America that has been al-Qaida's recruiting sergeant in the region.

There are many well-meaning people in Britain who supported the Afghan war. They felt, out of some vague post-imperial guilt, that it was the west's "manifest destiny" to punish wrong-doing wherever it could, and to aid political and economic progress in the Muslim world. Even they must now wonder whether the game was worth the candle, whether the resources expended on the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq might have achieved their goals more peaceably.

Westerners cannot begin to comprehend the devastation their armies and bombers have inflicted on poor people who have the flimsiest of political and economic structures to survive them. The idea that the Afghan people can sensibly "choose" between the west and the Taliban is nonsense. All they want is peace, and all the west has brought them is war. It will take decades for the wounds to heal, and they will never be healed by western arms.

The test for Washington and London in the aftermath of Bin Laden's demise is to recapture some strategic initiative, so as to meet the declared policy of a steady withdrawal from the Afghan theatre. This will require supreme restraint in reacting to whatever is the response of militant Islam to Bin Laden's death. There is one obstacle to this. Supreme restraint is a phrase markedly absent from the lexicon of western diplomacy towards the Muslim world.


---Osama bin Laden corpse photo is fake---
Amelia Hill
guardian.co.uk, Monday 2 May 2011 12.03 BST
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/may/02/osama-bin-laden-photo-fake?INTCMP=SRCH

An image apparently showing a dead Osama bin Laden broadcast on Pakistani television and picked up by British newspaper websites is a fake.

The bloodied image of a man with matted hair and a blank, half-opened eye has been circulating on the internet for the past two years. It was used on the front pages of the Mail, Times, Telegraph, Sun and Mirror websites, though swiftly removed after the fake was exposed on Twitter.

It appears the fake picture was initially published by the Middle East online newspaper themedialine.org on 29 April 2009, with a warning from the editor that it was "unable to ascertain whether the photo is genuine or not".
Since then, however, the image has been claimed as genuine on a number of conspiracy forums and used to substantiate claims that the terrorist responsible for the 9/11 bombings had been killed.

The Guardian was one of the few sites to hold back from using the manipulated image on its front page, reporting the picture's existence in its live blog but questioning its legitimacy.

The image is based on a genuine photograph of Bin Laden taken in 1998 and used by the Reuters news agency.

On Twitter, a composite including the other photograph used to make the image was posted by @HannahMarbina and other users showed how easy it was to find the image already online with a simple search.


---Fox News affiliate reports: 'Obama Bin Laden Dead'---
by Darren Franich
http://popwatch.ew.com/2011/05/02/fox-news-obama-bin-laden-dead/

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