I’m going to cut and paste what Greg Sheridan said and leave some critical bits out. I’ll then, at some later date, tell you what I left out, and I’ll make an analogy between reading this brilliant article and the PROPER READING OF SCIENTIFIC PAPERS. The first part is the cut and past (leaving some things out). The analysis will come later.
IT just doesn’t add up.
The official American explanation for the operation against Osama bin Laden keeps changing every day. But at every point it requires such a leap of faith into the extraordinarily unlikely that it has a disturbing ring of contrivance about it.
At first, the US thanked the Pakistanis for their help in the operation and said in briefings they accepted that the Pakistani government and military had no prior knowledge that bin Laden had been hiding out for years
in a mansion on a 4000 sq m compound 800m from Pakistan’s main military academy at Kacul in Abbottabad.
This was and is implausible. The plot of land that housed bin Laden was bought by a member of a Pakistan military-backed terror group.
Quickly, the Americans switched to saying that bin Laden must have had an extensive support network to survive so close to the heart of the Pakistani military establishment, but they won’t go further than that.
This week, The Australian spoke to several senior officials and former officials of different nationalities who have served in Pakistan. All regard it as inconceivable that bin Laden could have been there, unknown to the Pakistanis. As one senior former Indian official said:
“It is impossible to live for one day in any cantonment area of a Pakistani military city without the knowledge of the military itself, much less for years at a time.”
In the analytical community, everyone now privately accepts that bin Laden must have had the support of senior figures in Pakistan’s Inter Services Intelligence and among other Pakistani intelligence agencies.
The Pakistani military chief, General Ashfaq Kayani, was head of the ISI for three years. It is inconceivable that, in such a sensitive matter, anything was done without his knowledge.
……. In several White House and Pentagon briefings, the Americans have thanked the Pakistanis for contributing intelligence that led them to the Abbottabad compound.
Pakistani efforts may, on occasion, be a little confused, but intentionally leading the Americans to the biggest and most embarrassing secret they are – at the same time – keeping from the Americans seems, frankly, more than a bit strange.
Then there are the physical details of the operation itself. Abbottabad is close to Pakistan’s border with India. Pakistan’s military is the most competent institution, perhaps the only competent institution, in the country. It exists for one over-riding purpose: to thwart India.
Pakistan has fought three wars with India. Its military is trigger-happy, deadly, and paranoid. It half-expects an Indian attack, or incursion of some kind, at every minute of every day. It is also rightly worried about terrorist attacks.
Yet the Americans breached Pakistani air space, flew a couple of helicopters into the city with the biggest military academy and a substantial standing military presence, not to mention extensive military intelligence, crashed one of the helicopters, hovered over Chez bin Laden for 40 minutes or so, conducted what they described as a “fierce” firefight and then flew away, all without provoking any response from the Pakistani military.
Does that sound plausible?
Yet the Americans, having initially thanked the Pakistanis for their co-operation in the mission, are now saying that they didn’t inform the Pakistanis about this at all until after the mission was concluded.
By that time, the Americans say, the Pakistanis were beginning to scramble some jets. The Indians would be fascinated to know how slow the Pakistanis are in even becoming aware of a major assault on a key military city.
A member of the Pakistani public was tweeting about the American mission as it was occurring. He thought the helicopters, especially the one that crashed, might be from the Taliban, or might be some kind of drone attack by the Americans.
Yet 800m away, the Pakistani army apparently slumbered through the whole process.
Then there is the firefight itself. Could bin Laden be killed and in the process only four of his bodyguards and supporters slain?
The compound, according to reports, was heavily fortified. According to American briefings, its inhabitants were consistently practising high-level security procedures, presumably to avoid being seen or spied upon or making themselves a possible target for being shot. Yet at the same time they were apparently so relaxed about security that they didn’t have weapons to hand, didn’t inflict any casualties on the Americans and only three defenders died in the whole exercise, while bin Laden himself didn’t even have a weapon.
Does that have the ring of truth?
Remember that I’ve cut bits and pieces out. Like I would for a scientific study, that gratuitously genuflected to the global warming fraud. The fact is that this is a take-down of the American lie that they killed Osama when and where they said they did. More about this story later. Sensational analysis.