As the raid on Osama bin Laden was carried out, the president and his advisors in the Situation Room nervously listened for bin Laden's call name, 'Geronimo.' Once they heard 'Geronimo KIA,' the first confirmation that bin Laden was dead, the mission was still far from over. Brian Williams reports.
Osama bin Laden wanted to assassinate Barack Obama so that the "utterly unprepared" Joe Biden would become U.S. president, according to documents seized last year during the U.S. raid that killed the al-Qaida leader.
In letters from his last hideout -- according to a report called "Letters from Abbottabad: Bin Ladin Sidelined?" that was posted online Thursday by the U.S. Army's Combating Terrorism Center -- bin Laden also fretted about dysfunction in his terrorist network and the loss of trust from Muslims he wished to incite against their government and the West.
Other materials found inside the compound last May have revealed how al-Qaida's then leader regularly ordered his subordinates to plan new attacks, despite an increasingly limited cadre of operatives.
During the raid, Navy SEALs recovered five computers, 10 hard drives and more than 100 storage devices -- DVDs, discs and thumb drives -- that included between 10,000 and 15,000 documents and between 15,000 to 25,000 videos, including a large number of duplicate files.
Farooq Naeem / AFP - Getty Images
U.S. forces found and killed the al-Qaida leader in the affluent Pakistani town of Abbottabad, where he had been living in a large compound.
Al-Qaida hoped to convert Irish?
The documents also contained some slightly odd revelations, including the idea that al-Qaida thought Irish Catholics might be ripe for conversion to Islam.
“I noticed the sympathy of the Irish people to the Palestinian issue, and the soft treatment by the Irish Judicial system of Muslims accused of terrorism, and also not participating with its troops in [President George W.] Bush’s Crusade wars,” American al-Qaida spokesman Adam Gadahn wrote in a letter.
“The other matter is the increasing anger in Ireland towards the Catholic Church after exposing a number of sex scandals … The people there are moving towards secularism, after it was the most religious of atheist Europe, and why do not we face them with Islam?” he added.
Al-Qaida also fretted over its brand name. One document discussed how the group’s name was shortened from Qaida al-Jihad to al-Qaida and “this name reduces the feeling of Muslims that we belong to them.” It suggested names that could not be easily shortened “to a word that does not represent us.”
Those included “Muslim Unity Group,” “Restoration of the Caliphate Group,” and “Jihad Organization for the Unification and Rescue of the Nation.”
Al-Qaida also appears to have had a particular dislike for Fox News.
Talking about sending an al-Qaida message to the media, the spokesman Gadahn wrote, “I suggest that we should distribute it to more than one channel, so that there will be healthy competition between the channels in broadcasting the material, so that no other channel takes the lead. It should be sent for example to ABC, CBS, NBC, and CNN and maybe PBS and VOA.”
However Fox News, Gadahn said, should be left out the loop.
“As for Fox News, let her die in her anger,” he wrote.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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