US military secretly ordered to destroy bin Laden’s photos

US military secretly ordered to destroy bin Laden’s photos
Tue Feb 11, 2014 18:46:36

US military personnel, involved in the case of former al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden’s alleged death, were secretly ordered to destroy every photo of his dead body by a Special operation military commander, a new document reveals.

Commander of US Special Operations Command Adm. William McRaven told military officers 11 days after the killing to destroy any photographs or turn them over to the CIA, according to an email obtained by the conservative legal group Judicial Watch, the Associated Press reported on Monday.

"One particular item that I want to emphasize is photos; particularly UBLs [Usama Bin Laden] remains. At this point - all photos should have been turned over to the CIA; if you still have them destroy them immediately or get them" a blacked-out location, McRaven told his unnamed subordinates in a heavily blacked-out email addressed to "gentlemen."

Judicial Watch president Tom Fitton said that the email "is a smoking gun, revealing both contempt for the rule of law and the American people's right to know."

The United States announced on May 2, 2011 that bin Laden was killed by American forces in his compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan.

A number of media reports later said the US government was moving to hide files about the US military’s suspected raid on Osama bin Laden.
The lack of transparency over bin Laden's death has cast further doubt over the announcement.

McRaven's order came just 10 days after The Associated Press asked for the photos and other documents under the US Freedom of Information Act.

On May 3, 2011, the AP asked Special Operations Command's Freedom of Information/Privacy Act Division office for "copies of all e-mails sent from and to the US government account or accounts" of McRaven referencing bin Laden. McRaven was then vice admiral.

A May 4, 2011, response from the command's FOIA office to the AP acknowledged the bin Laden document request and said it had been assigned for processing. AP did not receive a copy of the McRaven email obtained by Judicial Watch.

The Department of Defense FOIA office told the AP in a Feb. 29, 2012 letter that it could find no McRaven emails "responsive to your request" for communications about the bin Laden material.

In an interview with Press TV last year, American professor Kevin Barrett said “it does not make any sense that we accept the official version of this killing of bin Laden.”

“It’s pretty hard to understand exactly why all the secrecy. One hypothesis is that they didn’t kill bin Laden at all and the whole thing is basically a hoax. There have been all kinds of reports that bin Laden died in 2001 and we have Egyptian and Pakistani media report his funeral in 2001,” Barrett explained.

“We do know that most of the so-called bin Laden tapes that were released after 2001 are definitely fake,” he said. “That would support the idea that maybe he actually died in 2001.”


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