In an interview with Time magazine—the first time he has spoken to the public since bin Laden’s death—CIA Director Leon Panetta admitted that U.S. officials were only 60 to 80 percent certain the al Qaeda leader was in the compound before they moved in. They were also concerned that Pakistan "might alert the targets" of their mission, Panetta said, which is why the CIA decided not to work with the country on the raid. Panetta did not learn his intelligence arguments had convinced the president to proceed with the raid until Friday, when Obama officially authorized the helicopter mission in a signed letter. Panetta had told the president: "If I thought delaying this could in fact produce better intelligence that would be one thing. But because of the nature of the security at the compound, we're probably at a point where we've got the best intelligence we can get." He also told Time that U.S. forces came away from the compound with an "impressive amount" of material, including computers and electronics.
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