Zero Dark Thirty? You thought it was bullshit, now you know why

Posted in Culture of Lickspittle, War On Terror at 9:53 am by George Smith

I watched Zero Dark Thirty, Hollywood’s treatment of the hunt for Osama bin Laden and his eventual killing. It was unendurably long. And with so many lies already documented from the war on terror, well over half of it was easy to despise.

After the bin Laden mission, continuing with the movie, the members of SEAL Team 6 were deified. Even their fucking dog was celebrated.

In keeping with the character of the nation, Seymour Hersh today writes in the London Review of Books that much of it was bullshit.

Osama bin Laden had been a prisoner of the ISI, Pakistan’s intelligence service, essentially under house arrest in Abbottabad, an invalid being kept as leverage against the Taliban and al Qaeda in AfPak.

Pakistan was given “goodies” so a SEAL team could be sent to the house in Abbottabad to execute him. ISI soldiers were removed from the compound, the electricity turned off, the Pakistani air force stood down.

Pakistani advisors accompanied the SEALs and had even coached the team on how to breach the compound. Bin Laden was unarmed.

In other words, the way was paved for the mission, the ground prepared and they still managed to crash a helicopter, the result being that a new story had to be cooked up.


‘Of course the guys knew the target was bin Laden and he was there under Pakistani control,’ the retired official said. ‘Otherwise, they would not have done the mission without air cover. It was clearly and absolutely a premeditated murder.’ A former Seal commander, who has led and participated in dozens of similar missions over the past decade, assured me that ‘we were not going to keep bin Laden alive – to allow the terrorist to live. By law, we know what we’re doing inside Pakistan is a homicide. We’ve come to grips with that. Each one of us, when we do these missions, say to ourselves, “Let’s face it. We’re going to commit a murder.”

‘They knew where the target was – third floor, second door on the right,’ the retired official said. ‘Go straight there. Osama was cowering and retreated into the bedroom. Two shooters followed him and opened up. Very simple, very straightforward, very professional hit.’ Some of the Seals were appalled later at the White House’s initial insistence that they had shot bin Laden in self-defence, the retired official said. ‘Six of the Seals’ finest, most experienced NCOs, faced with an unarmed elderly civilian, had to kill him in self-defence? The house was shabby and bin Laden was living in a cell with bars on the window and barbed wire on the roof. The rules of engagement were that if bin Laden put up any opposition they were authorised to take lethal action. But if they suspected he might have some means of opposition, like an explosive vest under his robe, they could also kill him. So here’s this guy in a mystery robe and they shot him. It’s not because he was reaching for a weapon. The rules gave them absolute authority to kill the guy.’ The later White House claim that only one or two bullets were fired into his head was ‘bullshit’, the retired official said. ‘The squad came through the door and obliterated him. As the Seals say, “We kicked his ass and took his gas.”’

None of this should really come as a surprise in the corporate dictatorship engaged in forever war.

And it probably won’t displace the official account.

But it again belies the alleged power and expertise of the American military. Much money was spent; they crashed a Black Hawk helicopter, anyway. (And remember all that stuff about stealth? More excrement.)

“Seals cannot live with the fact that they killed bin Laden totally unopposed, and so there has to be an account of their courage in the face of danger,” it reads. “The guys are going to sit around the bar and say it was an easy day? That’s not going to happen.”

Hersh’s account won’t be believed in many quarters. My take it that much of the American media will ignore it. When they have something to say it will be to Gary Webb him.

There are no good people in Hersh’s account. The only reason different facts have come out in such volume is payback and politics, via at least one source in Pakistan and one who worked the job at the CIA who felt betrayed.

On and on it goes, explaining that everything in the government account of bin Laden’s killing — was just more crap for public consumption.

There wasn’t even a burial at sea. Gunfire had torn bin Laden’s body to pieces. His head and what was left were tossed in a body bag. Remnants were thrown out of the helicopter over the mountains, “according to the Seals.”

On top of all of it, the administration and CIA chief Leon Panetta used the bin Laden raid to justify some of the uses of torture.

The Obama administration’s tale and, later, the movie Zero Dark Thirty delivered a story that “enhanced interrogation” had contributed to finding bin Laden when it was, perhaps, a Pakistani official who had given him up.

For reward money, $25 million. Which is, in a matter of fact way, easy to believe.

It’s here.

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