WASHINGTON, November 02, 2017 – The CIA just released hundreds of files recovered during the raid on the Osama Bin Laden compound in 2011. The released documents shed light on the terrorist organization and Bin Laden’s actions during his final days.
Among the files are the terror leader’s 228-page personal journal, photos, and video of Bin Laden’s mysterious son Hamza bin Laden. Documents also show that Osama bin Laden was still actively leading the terror network at the time of his death.
Osama Bin Laden and Al Qaeda
The documents also show that the network was much stronger in 2011. Both terror groups Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) routinely received advice and direction from Osama Bin Laden.
Also recovered is a 19-page paper detailing Al Qaeda’s relationship with Iran. It shows that Iran offered a group of unknown Saudi terrorists money, arms and training in Lebanon in exchange for attacking key American interests in Saudi Arabia and the Gulf.
Iranian officials role in protecting Osama Bin Laden revealed
Iranian intelligence officials were key in providing visas and safe havens for these operatives. The document also reveals that the terror network violated the agreement with Iran and so the country detained some of the network’s personnel.
Other source material provides insight into the history of Al Qaeda’s work in Iraq, from the early days of Abu Musab al Zarqawi inside the country to the creation of ISIS and Baghdadi becoming its leader.
The CIA also released an audio file detailing Zarqawi’s movement prior to the American invasion to his travels to Iran, Syria and other parts of the Middle East. Another audio file gives insight on al Qaeda’s thoughts on various sheikhs, including those who supporting the efforts in Iraq.
Multiple news outlets including the Weekly Standard were calling for the release of these documents in the name of transparency as former President Obama’s national security adviser said the files recovered could fill “a small college library” and in 2011 a military intelligence official said:
“As a result of the raid, we’ve acquired the single largest collection of senior terrorist materials ever.”
Under President Obama’s administration the files were only released at a slow rate and not giving the country a clear picture of how the terror leader and organization worked.