Do you believe in the Easter Bunny? Then you believe that a team of immaculately trained Navy Seals scaled a wall, engaged in an intense firefight with bin Laden's deadly mujahedeen bodyguards, finally killed bin Laden as he rushed at them, armed, shielding himself with a woman the Americans were forced to kill. All bullshit.

 

The Stanton Peele Addiction Website, May 3, 2011. This blog post also appeared on Stanton's Addiction in Society blog at PsychologyToday.com.

The Bin Laden Story Isn't True

Have you ever noticed that the first story - and maybe the next several - that comes out around some critical event is never true? NEVER!

Remember that, class - whatever you hear about such an event can't be true - CAN'T BE.

The raid leading to the killing of Osama bin Laden was supposedly videoed in "real time" - I heard several commentators say that. I could tell when they did that it wasn't true, because (a) they hadn't seen the video, (b) the vague way they described what that meant indicated they didn't know what they were talking about (the technical term for this is "bullshitting"). One guy said that all the raiders had night cameras on their helmets that streamed video "back." Back where? Was there a director taking all the feeds and creating a single narrative for Obama and the others in the situation room to view?

Of course not - that's idiotic.

Here's what actually occurred, according to Leon Panetta, director of the CIA: "once those teams went into the compound, I can tell you there was a time period of almost 20 to 25 minutes where we really didn't know just exactly what was going on, and there were some very tense moments as we were waiting for information."

As a result, the stories we have been fed have already changed radically.

Remember when bin Laden fired an automatic weapon?

He was unarmed.

Remember when he used a woman in the room with him as a "human shield" and she was killed?

The woman who died was on a different floor.

Remember the armed guards at the bin Laden compound whom the raiders fought off during an intense firefight?

This isn't true, according to the Times : "Bin Laden no longer had a circle of Arab bodyguards, or mujahedeen who had fought with him against the Soviet Union, but two married men and their young families."  Both men died with him in the compound.  It seems that bin Laden had NO security. The firing and explosives employed by the Seals, which took more time than anticipated, seem to have been used to penetrate the inner compound/actual house walls.  They then simply faced bin Laden, his family, and some retainers, including the woman (NOT bin Laden's wife) who was killed along with the two Pakistani family friends.

It's not the confusion of events that makes for these misstatements. Oh, the confusion permits the untruths. But the made-up facts are there to fulfill a narrative. Bin Laden was armed because Americans would never shoot an unarmed man. Bin Laden used a woman as a human shield, which was why she was killed, because Americans would never kill a woman otherwise. And bin Laden's manse was well-guarded because a large team of brave, well-trained military assassins HAD TO encounter furious armed resistance - they don't just go in and kill people!

That's what Americans needed to hear; that's what they were told.

P.S.:  I visited Ground Zero this day.

P.S.S.:  Some readers (look at the comments) doubted my account.  This headline appeared in the Times late on May 5th:

Account Tells of One-Sided Battle in Bin Laden Raid

By MARK LANDLER and MARK MAZZETTI

The new details suggested that more than 20 Navy Seals quickly dispatched the handful of men protecting Osama Bin Laden, with only his trusted courier firing on U.S. forces.