05.02.11

Bin Laden Dead: Reactions and Commentary

Nearly a decade after the 9/11 attacks, President Obama confirmed that U.S. agents killed al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden in a firefight deep inside Pakistan on Sunday. He has since been buried at sea. Peter Beinart, Bruce Riedel, and more Daily Beast contributors weigh in on the momentous achievement.

Should We Hit Gaddafi Next?
By Paul Wolfowitz

The president acted bravely in choosing to strike at Osama bin Laden. Will he act on behalf of the people of Libya next? Former Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz makes the case for further decisive action in the Middle East, in the current issue of Newsweek.

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If My Dad Were Still Here
By Max Giaccone

Max Giaccone was 10 years old on 9/11, when the towers fell and he lost his father. In this week's Newsweek, Giaccone on what Osama bin Laden's death means to him.

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© Newsweek

George W. Bush Officials on Osama bin Laden Death
By Mike Giglio and R.M. Schneiderman

Obama finished the job, but taking out Osama bin Laden was one of the Bush administration’s top goals. W.’s top aides, from key confidante Karen Hughes to Rumsfeld deputy Steven Bucci, reflect on the kill.

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Why Bin Laden Was Not Taken Alive
By Paul Campos

Capturing al Qaeda’s leader could have yielded useful intelligence—but would have led to a political and legal circus, and embarrassed the U.S. The political reality is that the president had no choice, writes Paul F. Campos.

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Navy SEAL Helmet Cams: Did Obama Watch the bin Laden Raid Video?
By Ian Yarett

The iconic White House Situation Room photo has led to speculation that officials were viewing the raid—live via helmet cam. Ian Yarett on how combat video works.

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Photos Will Give Closure on Osama
By Ralph Begleiter

As much more sensitive classified material flows from WikiLeaks, it's important to publicly document the death of bin Laden. Ralph Begleiter on why releasing the Osama photos would be a lesson for the world in transparency.

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Pakistan Is Playing Dumb
By Fatima Bhutto

The Islamabad establishment has been feigning ignorance for years. Fatima Bhutto on the price ordinary Pakistanis pay as their leaders allow the country to fall apart.

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Tony Blair Sees Justice in bin Laden's Death
By Tony Blair

However long it’s taken, someone who set about deliberately killing large numbers of innocent people was finally brought to justice.

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Osama bin Laden Died a Fool and Has No Legacy
By Dana Vachon

Osama bin Laden thought he was launching a revolution, but by the time he died the Arab Spring and America’s mortgage meltdown made him irrelevant. Novelist Dana Vachon on the terrorist’s non-legacy.

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Pakistan's Former Prez: U.S. Broke the Rules
By Mike Giglio

Pervez Musharraf calls the U.S. raid that killed Osama bin Laden a violation of his nation’s sovereignty. Newsweek’s Mike Giglio interviews the former president in this week’s issue.

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The Secrets of the Situation Room: From Audrey Tomasan to Burn Bags
By Daniel Stone

The Situation Room is one of the most secure conference rooms in the world; only a few people ever get to see it in action. Daniel Stone decodes the secrets hiding in the Sit Room.

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It's the Economy, Stupid
By Douglas Schoen

Why has President Obama's post-Bin Laden bounce been so limited, especially among Independents? Douglas Schoen, analyzing the new Newsweek/Daily Beast poll, finds an answer in Thursday's jobless jump.

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Did Tom Clancy Predict Raid?
By Nick Summers

In Dead or Alive, the author, who previously foretold how passenger planes could be used as weapons, paints an eerily accurate picture of the terrorist’s takedown.

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Why Obama Won't Release Osama bin Laden's Death Photos
By Daniel Stone

Grisly shots of Osama bin Laden’s corpse won’t be released, the president decided today. Daniel Stone explains the controversial judgment call—and how the “gory” images could have backfired.

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Did CIA Ignore Bin Laden Warning?
By Philip Shenon

The Pakistani Foreign Ministry says it told U.S. intelligence of suspicions about the compound in Abbottabad where bin Laden was found. Philip Shenon reports on the claim’s credibility.

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Bin Laden's Death Heightens Tensions in Kabul
By Ann Marlowe

There were no celebrations in the Afghan capital on the news of bin Laden's killing. Some hoped Mullah Omar and other terrorists would return to Afghanistan from their Pakistani refuges, but mostly a state of alert was ratcheted up, writes Ann Marlowe.

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Bin Laden Death Reveals Pakistan's Betrayal
By Richard Miniter

That Osama bin Laden could hide for years in Pakistan shows that Afghanistan is a sideshow. Richard Miniter says the real war is in Pakistan, which treats al Qaeda terrorists like family.

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Mullah Omar Should Be Next to Go
By Allan Dodds Frank

Ayman al-Zawahri, al Qaeda’s No. 2, may be many analysts’ pick as the top terrorist target in the wake of Osama bin Laden’s death, but Allan Dodds Frank says the Navy SEALs should hunt down a far more important spiritual leader: Mullah Omar.

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How DNA Swiftly Identified Bin Laden
By Casey Schwartz

The quick killing, identification, and burial of the al Qaeda mastermind may raise some skepticism, but the latest DNA technology enables exactly this kind of speed, writes Casey Schwartz.

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The Bin Ladens' Family Struggle
By Jean Sasson

The co-author of a memoir by Osama bin Laden’s son and one of his wives shares the reaction of the family and her thoughts on the news—and what he means to them.

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The GOP's 2012 Jitters
By Howard Kurtz

Obama just took out the world’s top terrorist—providing a burst of momentum just as the 2012 race begins. Howard Kurtz on the GOP dilemma—and why the Dems’ advantage may be short-lived.

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‘Justice Is Done’
By Howard Kurtz

The president’s announcement that a U.S. team assassinated Osama bin Laden, nearly 10 years after 9/11, is a morale boost for the U.S.—and will likely stand as Obama’s greatest achievement.

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The Decade's Best Osama Reads
By The Daily Beast

From the time he slipped from our grasp in Tora Bora to the obituary of "The Most Wanted Face of Terrorism," The Daily Beast picks the best longform journalism about Osama bin Laden.

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Front Pages From Around the World
By The Daily Beast

It was a death that shocked the world: From screaming insults against the “butcher of 9/11” to shots of cheering crowds, see how the papers covered Osama Bin Laden’s downfall.

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Obama Approval Numbers After Bin Laden Kill
By The Daily Beast

While the public lauds the president’s performance killing Bin Laden, he got no overall bounce in a new Newsweek/Daily Beast poll. Also: Obama vs. Bush on terror and Obama vs. Trump in 2012.

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Al Qaeda Retaliation: Terror Red Alert Zones
By The Daily Beast

After bin Laden’s death came ominous warnings of retaliation from several al Qaeda members. From New York to Indonesia, these are the regions that are amping up security and bracing for the worst.

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Conspiracy Theorists Doubt Osama's Death
By Josh Dzieza

Osama bin Laden conspiracy theories have been circulating ever since September 11. Josh Dzieza on calls for photos of his corpse as proof that the man hunt is really over.

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Osama bin Laden's Courier: The Man Who Led the U.S. to bin Laden
By Josh Dzieza

Now that Osama bin Laden is dead, the big question is how did the U.S. catch him? Josh Dzieza on the man who blew the terrorist leader’s cover.

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Osama Was My Neighbor
By Ron Moreau and Sami Yousafzai

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Osama Was My Neighbor
By Ron Moreau and Sami Yousafzai

Residents from the upscale neighborhood where bin Laden spent his last days talk to Newsweek/Daily Beast about hearing the firefight, living next to bin Laden, and mourning the loss of a leader.

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Osama Bin Laden's Twisted Love Life
By David A. Graham

When the Navy SEALs stormed bin Laden’s compound, he reportedly used his wife as a human shield. David Graham on the terrorist leader’s marriages, divorces, and numerous children. Plus, The Daily Beast's full coverage of bin Laden's death.

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Inside Osama bin Laden's Pakistan Compound
By David A. Graham

When he was killed Sunday, Osama bin Laden was hiding in plain sight—in a small town next to Pakistan’s military academy. David A. Graham on the clues that gave him away, and how the U.S. Navy practiced for the raid.

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Osama Bin Laden's Controversial Sea Burial
By McKay Coppins

Within hours of his death, the U.S. Navy discarded Osama bin Laden’s body in the Arabian Sea, outraging both Glenn Beck and radical Muslim clerics. McKay Coppins on the government’s rationale.

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Osama bin Laden: Life and Death of a Terrorist
By McKay Coppins

Bin Laden’s death marks the end of a long, successful career in senseless jihad. From founding the al Qaeda terrorist network to masterminding the 9/11 attacks, a timeline of his life and atrocities. Plus, read full coverage of bin Laden's death.

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Osama Death Will Reopen America's 9/11 Wounds
By Jessica Stern

Bin Laden’s death will remind America of everything it has sacrificed in the decade since 9/11—making the moment not only an opportunity to rejoice, but a time to grieve what the nation has irretrievably lost.

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Fernando Leon

Salman Rushdie: Pakistan's Deadly Game
By Salman Rushdie

Are we really supposed to believe that Pakistan didn’t know Osama bin Laden was living there for five years? Salman Rushdie on why it’s time to declare the country a terrorist state.

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Why the U.S. Acted Alone
By Christopher Dickey

Islamabad’s Al Qaeda allies complicated the hunt for Public Enemy No. 1. Christopher Dickey on how the U.S. went over the heads of bin Laden's Pakistan protectors.

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Who Was Hiding Bin Laden?
By Bruce Riedel

The terror mastermind was finally found in Pakistan's heartland. Who will lead in the post-Arab spring era? Bruce Riedel on the unanswered questions bin Laden left in his wake.

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Obama’s Greatest Accomplishment?
By Andrew Sullivan

The president who found and killed Osama bin Laden—a terrorist who attacked American soil—will be very difficult not to re-elect. Andrew Sullivan on Obama's new glow.

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Blogging the Arc of Justice
By Andrew Sullivan

The Dish’s Andrew Sullivan charted the night's astounding events—noting that Sunday was the anniversary of both George W. Bush’s "Mission Accomplished" and the announcement of Hitler's death.

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The War on Terror Is Over
By Peter Beinart

Bin Laden’s death gives the U.S. a golden opportunity to bury the war on terror—a distraction, Peter Beinart argues, that distorted America’s foreign policy for too long.

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Osama Bin Laden's Pakistan Haven
By Asra Q. Nomani

It’s not shocking that Osama bin Laden was found in a comfortable Pakistan mansion—what’s shocking is that the U.S. pretends the country isn’t a harbor for terrorists.

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Al Qaeda On the Ropes
By P.J. Crowley

Bin Laden’s death doesn’t end the terror cell. But it’s the latest in a series of major setbacks. Ex-State Dept. spokesman P.J. Crowley on the group’s battle against irrelevance.

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The Anger from Pakistan
By Eliza Griswold

As the world reels from the death of Osama Bin Laden, the mood in Karachi is changing from indifference to anger at the continuing American presence there. Eliza Griswold reports from Karachi.

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How the News Was Managed
By Daniel Stone

From making sure nothing leaked to deciding which room Obama would use to make his announcement, White House officials carefully orchestrated how the world would be told about the killing of the al Qaeda leader, Daniel Stone reports.

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Death of Bin Laden: 9/11 Relatives Happy But Cautious
By Shushannah Walshe

Families of World Trade Center and other 9/11 victims say the killing of the al Qaeda mastermind is welcome news—but warn that angered terrorists may strike again, reports Shushannah Walshe.

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Watch Video: Osama's Death Doesn't Bring Closure for 9/11 Families
By The Daily Beast Video

When President Obama announced that Osama bin Laden had been killed, celebrations erupted across the country—but for those who lost loved ones on 9/11, the news was bittersweet. WATCH VIDEO of their reactions to the al Qaeda mastermind's death.

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Bin Laden Should Have Been Captured, Not Killed
By Geoffrey Robertson

As the White House admits bin Laden was unarmed, Geoffrey Robertson argues that the U.S. missed its chance to take the terrorist alive, detail his crimes in court—and rob him of martyrdom.

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Arab World's Mixed Reaction
By Fadel Lamen

As America celebrated the bin Laden killing, the response in the Middle East was more equivocal. Fadel Lamen translates the thoughts of angry leaders, probing columnists and Internet jihadis.

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Watch Obama's Speech

Video screenshot

Photo: Inside the bin Laden Compound

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Photos: The World Reacts

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