The Navy SEAL assault team that took out Osama Bin Laden left Pakistan with more than just the al-Qaida leader’s body. They also managed to snatch a trove of computer drives and disks, yielding what one U.S. official called “the mother lode of intelligence.”
Politico reports that hundreds of American personnel are already combing through the electronic bounty at a secret location in Afghanistan.
“Can you imagine what’s on Osama Bin Laden’s hard drive?,” the official said. “It’s going to be great even if only 10 percent of it is actionable.”
[Check out Slate's Navy SEAL slidewhow.]
A few other nuggets of information from the Politico piece:
--The photos of Bin Laden’s corpse are particularly gruesome, which will complicate the decision about whether to release them publicly.
--The raid was supposed to take no more than 30 minutes but it took U.S. forces 38 minutes to get in and out, thanks in part to the fact they had to abandon (and destroy) one of their helicopters after it was damaged during a hard landing caused from mechanical problems.
--The Seal team took fire on their way to the compound’s third floor, where Bin Laden had been sleeping.
--The soldiers radioed in the successful mission with the pre-arranged code word, “Geronimo.”