5 yrs after killing Osama bin Laden, CIA 'live tweets' Abbotabad raid

Washington: The CIA has marked the anniversary of the killing of Osama bin Laden by live-tweeting – with a five-year delay – the raid by US special forces on the al-Qaeda founder’s compound in Pakistan.

The compound in Abbotabad, Pakistan, where Osama bin Laden was killed in 2011. Pics/AFP
The compound in Abbotabad, Pakistan, where Osama bin Laden was killed in 2011. Pics/AFP

Using the hashtag #UBLRaid, the CIA tweeted the May 2011 strike as if it was unfolding in real time. “To mark the 5th anniversary of the Usama Bin Ladin operation in Abbottabad we will tweet the raid as if it were happening today. #UBLRaid,” @CIA said in announcing its social media blitz.

Osama bin Laden
Osama bin Laden

Tweets included the now famous picture of President Barack Obama and other high-ranking US officials watching matters unfold from the White House’s Situation Room.

The CIA’s Twitter move got quite a bit of attention, but not everyone was enthusiastic about the agency’s endeavour. “@CIA Are we tweeting Hiroshima on August 6th too? Or is THAT in bad taste?” tweeted one user, Kris Knight.

Another who identies as Amber V tweeted: “Don’t you have better things to do, like catch living and breathing bad guys, or secretly invade our privacy, or something? @CIA #UBLRaid” However, sevral others reacted positively.

Live-tweeting Osama’s death
1.51 pm EDT – Helicopters depart from Afghanistan for compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan #UBLRaid
3.30 pm EDT – 2 helicopters descend on compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan. 1 crashes, but assault continues without delay or injury #UBLRaid
3.39 pm EDT – Usama Bin Ladin found on third floor and killed #UBLRaid.

CIA eyes ISIS chief
Speaking about ISIS chief Abu Bakr al-Bagdadi, CIA chief John Brennan said: “If we got Baghdadi, I think it would have a great impact on the organization. And it will be felt by them.”

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