A Pakistani news report posted online by the Al Jazeera news network recounts the brave efforts and unjust imprisonment of Dr. Shakeel Afridi, the Pakistani physician who gave the U.S. military a detailed understanding of the compound where Osama Bin Laden was shot and killed.
The U.S. instructed Afridi to attempt to use his position as a public health vaccination volunteer to gain admittance into the compound.
Though he was denied, Afridi got a good enough look at the front door’s complex locking system to help the U.S. design a unique package of bombs that would successfully blow the door off.
Afridi also told the CIA of the many voices he heard from inside the home and the level of physical security surrounding it.
He “met with the CIA operatives [assigned to him] on more than 25 occasions,” the report reads, “and received approximately Rs. [Rupees] 10 million from them.”
10 million Pakistani Rupees is the equivalent of $100,000.
After finding out that he was conspiring with the U.S, the Pakistani government (largely controlled by the Taliban) arrested Afridi and sentenced him to over thirty years in prison, where he remains to this day. This is the same government that made no attempt to find Bin Laden aside from stopping people on the street who looked like him.
Afridi clearly played a vital role in the killing of Osama Bin Laden, but the U.S. has done virtually nothing to get him out of jail.
“[T]he fact is that he was arrested 3 weeks after the raid during which time the CIA could have ferreted him out of the country,” the report says.
The report also features one of Bin Laden’s relatives discussing how the former al-Qaeda leader used to wear a cowboy hat both inside and outside of his home to avoid drone detection. This little disguise seriously may have been a big part of the reason it took us so long to catch him when we knew he was hiding inside his own country.
Bin Laden was with his youngest wife, Amal, when SEAL Team 6 invaded his home.
“After the evening meal and prayer,” the account reads, “Amal and the Shaikh retired for the night. Shortly past midnight, they were awakened by the noise of what at first sounded like a storm.”
A few minutes later, Bin Laden was dead on the floor.
Via Al Jazeera, Photo credit: WENN