Peter Bergen on bin Laden’s final days, as revealed by writings seized from his compound
Tapping away at his computer in the study of the suburban compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, that he called home for the last years of his life, Osama bin Laden wrote memos urging his followers to continue to try to attack the United States, suggesting, for instance, they mount assassination attempts against President Obama and Gen. David Petraeus.
While he urged his organization on to attack America, bin Laden was also keenly aware that al Qaeda was in deep trouble because of the campaign of CIA drone strikes in Pakistan and also because the brutal tactics of his followers had alienated many Muslims.
According to senior Obama administration officials who have reviewed the “treasure trove” of the thousands of documents that were picked up by the U.S. Navy SEALs from bin Laden’s compound in Abbottabad, the leaders of al Qaeda understood that the group they led was “beleaguered.” CNN was given a briefing this week by senior administration officials who have been analyzing the documents.
Bin Laden wrote a 48-page memo to a deputy in October 2010 that surveyed the state of his organization. He was particularly concerned that al Qaeda’s longtime sanctuary in Waziristan in Pakistan’s tribal areas was now too dangerous because of the campaign of American drone strikes there that had picked off many of his key lieutenants.
His “paranoia” was justified.
The Washington Post’s David Ignatius has a good scoop about papers found in the Osama bin Laden compound. You can read it HERE.
ABC News can confirm that bin Laden wrote to others in al Qaeda about a plot to kill President Obama and General David Petraeus, then the commander of coalition forces in Afghanistan, writing: “The reason for concentrating on them, is that Obama is the head of infidelity and killing him automatically will make Biden take over the presidency. … Biden is totally unprepared for that post, which will lead the U.S. into a crisis. As for Petraeus, he is the man of the hour … and killing him would alter the (Afghanistan) war’s path.”
Bin Laden had hatched a plot to assassinate President Obama: http://t.co/56BFuEWe
— Nicholas Kristof (@NickKristof) March 17, 2012
Osama plot to kill Obama, Petraeus revealed http://t.co/6IehANoc
— Annie ♫ (@NWHippieGoddess) March 17, 2012
BREAKING: Osama bin Laden knew Biden better than Obama http://t.co/aBVozroi
— GayPatriot™ (@GayPatriot) March 16, 2012
Bin Laden’s plot to kill Obama http://t.co/oXfUMMNi He understood VP Biden, but thought too highly of President Obama.
— John Sweeney (@johnsweeney15) March 16, 2012
— Julie Jordan (@PoliticalGal11) March 17, 2012
News: ‘Joe’-ish conspiracy: Terror mastermind Osama bin Laden had one last plot up his sleeve to cripple the Uni… http://t.co/wO4jZrxu
— New York Post (@new_york_post) March 17, 2012
[rightblogs] Saturday Morning Open Thread: Steyn on Obama: Future generations will laugh at us for taking him se… http://t.co/D3AN9u5H
— rightblogs (@rightblogs) March 17, 2012
— David Burge (@iowahawkblog) March 16, 2012