Seymour Hersh report: Bin Laden raid a lie, Pakistan’s ISI had Qaeda leader under arrest in Abbottabad house since 2006

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In a 10,000 word investigative piece for the London Review of Books published online today, Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Seymour Hersh makes some astounding claims: that the Bin Laden raid by U.S. Navy Seals was largely a staged bit of political theater meant to protect and advance the reputations of officials within both the U.S. and Pakistani governments, including President Obama, who used the event to advance his reelection campaign.

The article, “The Killing of Osama bin Laden,” alleges that bin Laden had actually been held by Pakistan’s ISI since 2006:

This spring I contacted Durrani and told him in detail what I had learned about the bin Laden assault from American sources: that bin Laden had been a prisoner of the ISI at the Abbottabad compound since 2006; that Kayani and Pasha knew of the raid in advance and had made sure that the two helicopters delivering the Seals to Abbottabad could cross Pakistani airspace without triggering any alarms; that the CIA did not learn of bin Laden’s whereabouts by tracking his couriers, as the White House has claimed since May 2011, but from a former senior Pakistani intelligence officer who betrayed the secret in return for much of the $25 million reward offered by the US, and that, while Obama did order the raid and the Seal team did carry it out, many other aspects of the administration’s account were false.

It will be interesting to see whether the allegations make their way across the Atlantic and into the mainstream U.S. press.

Shortly after the story went live this Sunday afternoon, LRB’s website was inaccessible for up to an hour or more (around 3pm U.S. Central time), likely due to massive site traffic. As of early evening The Hill and The Huffington Post are the first to acknowledge Hersh’s report.

The 28 Pages and the War on Terror

28 PAGES.ORG (9/14/14) – Today more than ever, Americans are struggling to unravel the Gordian knot of overt and covert alliances that comprise the Middle East’s geostrategic landscape. As they do, politicians and pundits constantly remind them that reaching the correct conclusions about the region is imperative if we are to thwart the menace of terrorism and prevent the next 9/11.

As if a thicket of misinformation, hit-and-miss journalism and competing propaganda didn’t make the challenge daunting enough, the American people face an even more formidable barrier in their attempts to reach informed and rational conclusions about U.S. policy in the Middle East: the classification of a 28-page finding on foreign government support of the 9/11 hijackers—classification that continues over the objections of the chairman and vice-chairman of the 9/11 Commission and the former senator who co-chaired the inquiry that produced the 28 pages.

Preventing a hypothetical “next 9/11″ starts with a clear understanding of what enabled the actual one—yet, even as the U.S. military prepares for the next chapter in the seemingly perpetual War on Terror, Americans continue to be denied critical knowledge about how the September 11 attacks were planned and funded. Reflecting on that disconnect, Kentucky Congressman Thomas Massie recently told Slate, “Until we know what enabled or caused 9/11, we shouldn’t be talking about starting a third war to prevent another 9/11.”

Continue reading here…